The first time; awarded a rose for linguistic shyness.
The manager of the restaurant was as good-natured as he was beefy (which, incidentally, was the only item on the menu).
Earnest hand-clasps and heavily accented English.
Caught the city light show and little apartments winked back at a moon that looked like-what else?-cheese.
Dusty bookshop, all dragons and mermaids and villains.
They threw back the covers and went full-pelt for the walls.
Words in the furniture.

The second visit; more courage required.
Tumbled in and out again. Barely shut my eyes at all in ten days and was as blissful about that as a flourishing weed in a sympathetic field.
A sunflower was thrown into the green Seine but the Parisians were all out of town.

The third visit; rain-filled shoes.
Following day was bone-warming and dust-coated and I took a lining of it home on my suitcase. A souvenir.
That city has the fading decadence of a Havisham cake but its spirit would never concede to the lot of the rejected lover.
To get anywhere in life, Paris knows that one must ride a flying horse.



The birds quarrelled, as birds always do.
One claimed theirs was leafier,
Another, that theirs had the monopoly view-wise.
An old one with ragged feathers scoffed at the lack of shade,
Whilst the young ones all chorused together that they preferred the sun anyhow.
It was with secret longing that they eyed each others’ bark
And admired thick, far-reaching roots
And muttered in envy, that the other made for more comfortable nesting.
All the while, the trees stood silent
Looked at each other
And in the golden reprise of an Autumnal breeze…
They sighed.



I’m in London
Towering regency light
Bloomsbury language school
Teaching of tongues.
I think up
Saxophones and boats.

So, this boy
All brown limbs
And remarkable hair
The sea encourages
Salt-wet kisses
Fall in love
-With a bookshop.

Little life breaths
And better wine
She hasn’t underwear
But burlesque winks

A stony island
A literary cave
I sell books
With a stamp
Of a wave.
You dispense adventure
Like an apothecary!
Love is…sunburn.
The moon smiles.