The house called the dead

October 28, 2019

The ghost boy was the colour of bone, of gossamer spider web, of salt trails of dried tears. He still had his shape, his outline. No one had said his name in thirty years, even though he’d scarred the house with it, carved onto a tree in the garden, scratched into the paint under the outdoor kitchen. Scars unseen, name unspoken. The house had stood for close to a century, waking to kiss the sea breeze decades before, still standing when the red dirt roads had hardened to dark tarmac and the state had stolen the sea from it.

The house called the dead onto itself,  and so the boy persisted, him and the others, outnumbering the living. Walls skinned with the colour of the ocean meeting the sky, a driveway of parched and cracked stone, girded with the garishness of bougainvillea and the shyness of orchids. The newest owners had furnished the house with a television screen the same size as a car door, computers in every room, tiny bulbs the size of candles with the glare of lighthouses; ripped out the old worm-eaten flooring in favour of inky Burmese teak. Now, you can do that, strip a house down to the bone, flay the walls from it and pull tiles like teeth. But the marrow of the house remained, so the living never stayed and the dead never left.

On the thirtieth anniversary of his death, a new ghost came to the house.

L Chan
The sound of his voice like the colour of salt

A God who smiles down

June 30, 2019

The God I decide to believe in is the God of the bathroom floor. A God of scandalously low expectations. A God who smiles down at a drunk on the floor, wasted and afraid, and says, There you are. I’ve been waiting.

Glennon Doyle
Love Warrior

go to them

January 31, 2019

“You can’t stay in your corner of the forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go to them sometimes”

A. A. Milne
Winnie the Pooh
[illustrated by E. H Shepard]

The Needing

January 6, 2019

i need you
i crave you
it’s the only way i survive
you are my weakness i desire your control

in this space
down on my knees
this is where i belong
this is home my home

only you know how to satisfy
this hunger inside of me
i’m you little blackbird
you love to make me scream

who would have thought
through all this pain
my truth would be exposed
you did…

you knew me better than i knew myself
you saw my confusion
in the way i came crawling back to you

the needing
the bleeding
i’m conditioned
to always want more

but you make me wait…

I am Indigo


January 3, 2019

I wait every year for summer, and it is usually good, but it is never as good as that summer I am always waiting for.

Martha Gellhorn
Letter to Hortense Flexner and Wyncie King
[Selected Letters of Martha Gellhorn]

magic things

November 22, 2017

The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.


July 27, 2014


She sits up straight and taps her long red nails,
Impatient, tap-tap-tap, for me to go.
Not wiles nor wit nor flattery avails –
My dress is quaint, my jokes not apropos.
A biased friend had boasted of my charm,
And so she left her card embossed with gold.
She calls me “darling” but she means me harm.
Her face is young, her heart is eons old.

Immaculate and chilly is her palace;
The furnishings reflect a cultured taste.
She hears my compliments with gracious malice.
Some tea? I spill it in my nervous haste.
She smiles at me, a glassy, brittle smile,
A crack that spreads across a china plate.
Her wet white teeth are gleaming like the tile.
She yawns with meaning. “My, the hour grows late.”

Ejected guests: I hear their footsteps fade
And faintly echo, endless, through the halls.
She nudges me to join their dim parade,
Where mirth and music stop, where starlight palls.

She signals I must go – I give offence.
Time is a woman humourless and cold,
Fanatical and full of stiff pretense;
Her face is young, her heart is eons old.
She’ll rid herself of me, make no mistake.
I’m stubborn, though. I nibble at my cake.