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Peter Boyle

(1951 - / Melbourne / Australia)

When Eagles Pause To Talk With Your Sleeping Body


When you wake again
the donkey will be standing idly in the road,
the old man will open his shop,
the seagulls will tread critically
among the piles of garbage,
wind will flap small religious photographs
pegged to the ice cream stall,
the old woman and her daughter
will be sitting under the black cross
near the santo ninyo,
a man from the desert will go mad
in the bar by the marketplace,
a boy bandaged like a doll
will gaze from the tenth story window.

When you wake again
dusk will be falling across the harbour,
fishing boats will be rocking by the stone wharf,
cold night air will ripple the line of water,
a sinker will fall from a bridge
and bury itself in darkness,
the last train will climb the hill
turning its back on the sea.

When you wake again
drunks will skate in wide circles over the pond,
the ice cream seller will fold up his van,
a blonde-haired stranger will stroll uphill
with melons and cheese for dinner,
the neon signs will come on
and tomorrow’s clothes will hang in unopened wardrobes.

When you wake again
a favourite pillow will cover a magic toy car
that glows all night in the wind of silence,
a voice will cry out in a dream,
a woman will open the door
and recognise only the layer of dust on your shoes.

When you wake again
your life will fill the house
like a tap left running day and night
for a thousand years.

When you wake again
when the balcony crumbles at last
into the swimming pool
when eagles pause to talk with your sleeping body.

Submitted: Wednesday, May 02, 2012

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