Poetry Journal

Issues / Volume 5 Issue 1 , July 2015


Back Again

Mike Ladd

  Went out a door in Prague summer, 
  came into this wintry house in Adelaide; 
  hibernation time again 
  on the forgetting side of the world. 
  Temporary, horizontal, raw… 
  suburbs that seem to say
  ‘Don’t get any grand ideas—
  you and this sea of sheds’. 
  Now we lie close in the middle of the bed 
  remembering the warmth
  our children came from. 
  Awake before dawn, 
  I listen to your lagged breathing,
  imagine how cruel it would be here without you. 
  Would this house be a burial cave, 
  or would I dig myself out again? 
  The moonlight, even in winter, 
  is clearer and brighter here,  
  and there are birds instead of bells. 
  Our magpie (we call it ours) 
  tries its run of notes, falters, repeats; 
  like our writing and art careers. 
  I regret switching on the radio—
  a voice from the regime 
  boasts its ‘perfect score’ 
  turning away the desperate. 
  We will lose our public service jobs, 
  retreat to our gardens, 
  drink alcohol around the fire, 
  protest, write blogs, and wait 
  for the unauthorised return— 
  summer shining there under the door.