Our creation of savoury risotto
required aromatic herbs to be
freshly picked and roughly chopped;
chestnut mushrooms and spicy
home-grown onions sliced
meticulously just the way
you showed me. So dreamily
then I stirred the sticky rice,
anticipating our bottle of Beaujolais.
On hearing screeching brakes,
I left our fragrant risotto
cooling on the stove.
In a framed picture
(a winter Watteau)
I glimpsed the collision.
The transitory stillness drove
a stalagmite through my heart.
Frantic knocking on the door
galvanised me into action.
The boy’s windmill semaphore
bade me follow him.
I was escorted, aproned
but jacketless, my slippered
feet over-typed his footprints
towards the jumbled scene.
I see it still. A flurry of rice-white
snow petals obliterating skid marks,
delaying paramedics, settling shroud-like
on your boots. Chaos all around
is soft-footed but deadly.
I cradle you in my arms
protecting you from the
predatory gaze of onlookers.
Formalities followed protocol.
Steadily, slowly the years have drifted by,
but softly wafting odours of risotto
still silence my tongue. The fragmented
image of chalky grains chokes
my throat with its unsavoury cremation.
Origami paper when folded, can be turned
and shaped into inanimate figures of fantasy.
A Japanese invention, imagination is boundless
when it comes to creating a temporary legacy.
Nature’s bounty relies on growing, spreading.
Released from seeds, cornflowers, marigolds and petunias
unfold petals in sunshine after showers, and smoothing
reveals delicate transparency of lettuce and euphorbias
A chrysalis evolves from soft pupae. Its shiny brown
desiccated skin-case holds an inert butterfly tight
inside, then splits, releasing spreading, unfolding,
bright and beautiful wings for unhurried flight.
Theory suggests its gentle fluttering might cause chaos! How?
But the potency of unstable folds, aeons old under Earth’s crust
(which imprison arcane forces), quaking, shaking – forcing
magma outwards give solid reasons to fear their climactic thrust.
The pleated hills of home, softened by heather, worn down,
exposed, rounded by weather, both ferocious and balmy
are no threat to mankind. These unyielding folds are
benign, static and spent, supine and inanimate, like origami.