for Chin

Within the storm, a room;
Within the room a special quiet:
Within the softly gradual point
Intersecting selves reflate.
In one corner, a threat of shadows
Mixing with half-remembered remnant
Chants, codicils, footnotes, old infinities.
The air-con’s goblin hum
Shakes the window’s furtive light.
Outside our thunders quarrel.
All is familiar, poised.

I do not think of you, my paradox,
Though the mood proclaims
And you inhere.

I come free in the eye of the storm,
Flourish beyond the limb’s appeasement,
The blood’s sharp, rooted memories.
I do not move, but move against
Grey dissolving skies, clean lightning,
Jurassic clouds that war and break.
I do not move, but move to
Grasp the horizon’s one simple line.

Yet as you return
The broken rainbow forms again;
The sun, resting on its elbow,
Speaks with surety, ruminates, decrees.

So the great and little chords shift;
So the metaphors and pauses re-arrange.
So for a moment I am
Released, my paradox.

Do not move: our limbs hold
Against expectancy. Your sighs
With quiet fires again unfold
The patient hunger in my eyes.

And when we turn within the cage
Our bodies make, and find a sea
With neither tide nor age,
An act of bonding sets us free.

by Edwin Thumboo
from A Third Map: New and Selected Poems (1993)


SELECTED POEMS: "Renovation" >