Indigo Perry


ghost    calligrapher   I have 
                     seen you  carving  
                       from  out of a clear sky
                    calm day   wind soothed  
                   solitary     Wild whippings of
                   scarification  so  quiet
                   you        could be painting.
                      How do you know the 
                       parings of  crescent moon 
                     to   fall    as scythes in leaves. 
                   Figuration  of memory over 
                      the veins, the vast swathes
                                of arterial oceans, 
                                    silhouette of
                                    and falling, 
                                      always the 
                                      falling,   over 
                                    skin,    making 
                                 forms of the ligatures
                                    in fractals   caught 
                                  up,   the blue-white 
                                      flash,    shock, 
                                  the unseen  dive    
                              from   warmth   and 
                                 the   soft childhood 
                              of yellow,    faint  trace
                           of a summer you believed
                             you'd remember.     
                               When, I wonder, 
                             did you forget to 
                               remember and 
                                 when must you
                                 forgetting.    And 
                               then, the taste 
                                 of regret.   But 
                                 the sorrow  drains
                              and washes with 
                                  the storm   and 
                                you look in the morning
                                at the lines of trees    
                            and see how they echo
                                 the jagged cuts  of
                                 lightning, and as they
                                 already grow soft 
                              and pale,   luminescent, 
                          on the quiet parts of 
                             your arms, the under-
                                 sides away from the
                               burn of the sun, 
                           already you feel 
                              brighter.  And ready 
                                   to    set  well-
                                   constructed new 
                                      fires to warm 
                                      your house and 
                                         dry the clothes
                                         in   rain  
                                         and blue light.   
                                      It rings and razes 
                                         you in 
                                        cloud forms.

Fault Lines

            strange tracings  along
             crumbling clifftops  
         resisting the ecstasy 
             of    falling.      Extremities
         curled   to  soft landings.  
                 The comforts 
             of love affairs 
                played out in the
                  Eyes closed to 
              the agony  of   the
          outside.        Temporal 
              Where calling up the
           sound of you sorting
          through the cases of 
        your music     soothes 
                            and   warms. 
               Not to sleep. 
         Walking,     still,    under
             the  bright   eyes  of
          moonlight.          Not 
           quite    alone.   You 
               and the happiness 
             you place inside me
         linger   nearby   spectres
                tree  figures.     
           There  is      joy   to 
              this accompaniment   
                  the weight of 
                  sadness       Like
                the company   of a
             brother   long  ago 
          lost to depths.      He 
            appears  if I call to him   
                  but  mostly  he  is 
                     still     He's the 
                 brother   caught 
                 in photographs     
              and memory.   He
           crosses  rooms  in 
                 you        arrive
            from   your   own  
       night   wandering    Waking
          me   softly   with 
             fingertips      when  I 
         thought   sleep   had 
           eluded me      and   I 
              was     sentenced   to
                  the  hard lines of 
              the  waking.  
          Holding   you 
             it's  an  echo       The
                 heat seeps   in    
             a deep bath    that 
                never   cools      
            Geothermally loved.   
                 You're not
              like the phosphorous
           threads   of   my brother. 
        Your night visitations 
             are    deep  in  warm 
               colours     and  I am 
             held  while  rain 
                describes  a distant
              Doors left    ajar
         Remembered intruders
       Mornings   when   what was
          lost   rises  again and again. 
        You're still here  until I must
        open my eyes.     
                  will I start to 
                 instead  of 
          feeling for a fault line to
            fall through. 

Bitter Tastes

here   in time and 
                                 out   this revelling  
                                    not  acutely 
                                  rebellious  for once
                                  but still I hold her
                                  the one who rages 
                                     dances   from the
                                       and   youthful    
                                         Fresh minds  
                                              threading through
                                                   bones  and 
                                            branches   tied 
                                      up  hard nubs  of cold
                                            Wind rhythms 
                                        in   the wilting  of
                                  morning    But the
                                  rebel,    she stills, 
                                     she    rests 
                                        discernible   from
                                      these fern bodies, 
                                 furred,    softly frantic 
                               inner    darkness    The 
                               scores of families        I
                                   hear   you,   singing 
                                      child    Calling  
                                    the   mother
                                       to stop   pounding 
                                    keys   and 
                                         enjoy  the 
                                     light       walking through 
                                        sunshine.     Notice
                                           shadows on 
                                        closed eyelids  not 
                                      as spectres of danger 
                                          but as 
                                         symbols  and spaces   
                                     As cloud forms hold
                                     secrets     And 
                                        there  is the murmured
                                        melody     of insects 
                                     crossing thresholds  
                                         to lace
                                      workings  To rise, 
                                     my happiness,  from 
                                        sleep.   Not all
                                        poems are sad, 
                                    although all the 
                                    ones I read  are
                                    of the   sea,  
                                      whether deep    
                                   and layered with 
                                   rooms  and apertures
                                      doors and   windows
                                   ajar,    or else 
                                       skimming shallow 
                                         tones   of 
                                      warmth     the 
                                        gold that I 
                                        drink to the

Indigo Perry's book Midnight Water: A Memoir was shortlisted for Australia's National Biography Award. She is a senior lecturer in Writing & Literature at Deakin University. Most of Indigo's current writing is poetry, often written in public spaces, and improvised live in performance art as part of the collaborative duo Illuminous. www.indigoperry.com.
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