Cinnamon salt

I sat in pulsing silence

a drip of sweat over sunscreened cheek

of just-before-1pm

 

The temple was red

and “mom, it smells like old indian people”

came floating through the open door

 

Incense went stick upon stick

from an endless donation box to Confucius

and other gods

 

I didn’t know

but I did remove my shoes;

flat leather plates with thinning straps

 

Sitting, exhausted

on a tiled step of tourist history

 

I could tell, after ten minutes

another bunch of americans had gathered near

“oh look shhhh! she’s praying!”

 

Maybe I was

maybe the ignorant tourist was praying

in an ancient temple devoted to gods and figures of eternal wisdom and power

she didn’t know or understand

 

Still I breathed in the perfume dust,

knowing there’s always

the beach

 

From kneeling to swimming

it’s a 4km pilgrimage from here

so the sign says

 

I’ll go now

I’ll wash away the sweat and sins

by sea

The Third Tuesday



finishing the book
blank pages, an afterthought
silent appreciation over space
she smiled on the other side of the world
he smirked, remembering
a dirty moment with her on him

alone but for the squares on her wrist
reminder of human compassion (love)
forgetting about time,
when spider eats ant
they watch, as fascinated children
sipping fizzy water and drifting

chlorinated casualties
sun and shoulders, beaming down
textures and tones
a bicycle in the heat
riding the street past fatigue

morning gone, evening settled
selling melted malteasers
then laughing with another
it was a simple day,
sharing the green waves
ending up on a jetty
and the same cigarettes with which they began