Bougainvillea is
Ballina,
across the fence
outside my door.
A broken bird,
scatter of silver –
the wooden steps, and then
the sudden immersion.

The certainty of the plunge,
as sheets of wet paper
-flecked through with colours
like damp sand on your fingers-
emerge fully formed on mesh.

The unspoken name, dalliances-
secreted on scraps of
folded paper
-no siren call-
just words written joyously
with my big toe
on sand
for the tide to wash away.

(I loved him then, my lover
but he was no Johnny)

Cultivating ashes,
if I could catch that Shaws Bay
mullet in my hands, mid-
leap
then I could stop time, right there,
and hold those days aloft-
a trophy of youth pinned fast.