Capturing Fog


It was there in the push and pull when

She implored me to capture the swirling fog,

Wrapping the bodies of a million lives,

But I couldn’t wrench my focus from

The golden tops of evergreens.


That the clutch of my mind slipped a few decades

to a lean-to kitchen shack in that place 

she once described as the bar where

Han Solo slipped into Luke Skywalker’s tale

making an adventure out of his earnestness.

And the remembered grittiness of living 

with the ebb and flow of life’s detritus

crawled out, ploughed itself some neural pathway

To itch my skin right down to the bone.


Hearing the first woman calling for water,

Always more anything to make life bearable,

Maintain some illusion of proprieties, godliness.

Raw blistered boyish hands in the heat

pumping that never to be sated lever action sump

pulling water up from a barrel below to another above,

the energy of youth waisting into my shorts, soaking

straining for the blessed sound of runoff

announcing the end, and hearing instead

Father declaring us the one-percent, the fortunate few.


The youngest woman asks me for a photo every day

The poets, pleading the case for honest bums and arses,

Implore me to capture life within the swirling fog. 

Mind recoiling from the grit, refuses eyes that fortune, 

Demands they focus only on the poorer beauty

of treetops, blushing to be seen naked at sunrise

In the empty sky.


 © Philip Knight 2018