Carole Nelson Phillips Carole Nelson Phillips has been writing for four years. She has had work published in the NZ Listener, the Mozzie and Saltlick Quarterly . She has two grown children, lives in rural New Zealand and is raising her two year old grandchild. She writes and works with clay when she can.
I'll show her colour not shadow she calls me from midday heat I follow the sounds she makes leave a half eaten sandwich basket of green walnuts the room is dim stillness broken by the small girl twirling bare except for a nappy luminous as she spins funny how she remembers your sarong hip sway the cattle lined road every friday drive a routine she can't name it snapped today she's in bed early unresisting I've a skin full of bourbon run out of drugs a letter on the sideboard red ink from your wife & I'm spinning luminous it's everything everyone said repentance in 36 degrees walked barefoot on a gravel road past willows & wild fruit climbed down a steep bank to the river placed stones in a circle lit a small fire counted my sins gathered bunches of nightshade watched berries burst leaves, stems curl & burn crushed them to ash covered my body lay in a pool thought of appropriate words whispered them to birds above & the eel who brushed my thigh rose from the water murmured into the ear of a yellow dog he licked my feet & hands clean he followed me home perhaps an act of ceremony (with thanks to richard zola) from the window i watch her ash grows long on my cigarette she stands focused plucks flat seed purses from honesty plants fills her green bucket handle draped over her forearm walks toward stone steps leading up to the front door avoids bees on lavender scatters seed purses on each step ash falls to the floor her eyes lift to the window behind me an easel & paints a yellow bow she will be 2 on monday hasn't seen her mother since this garden was lifeless except for leaves turning red