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Friday, July 1, 2011

Three Poems by Christian Ward

Three Poems by Christian Ward

The Nest

After weeks of poring over possible locations,
I found it on Easter Saturday, right above
an air vent on my balcony, past the stockings

of cobwebs. Sprigs of weed were precariously
placed on the edge, a twig tottered between
its world and mine like a tightrope, dirt specks

painted darkness - illuminated only by the finch's
starry colours. I rarely saw the bird: sometimes
it flitted on the washing line, making the wire

jump like an oscillation. Perhaps upstairs' cats
frightened it, the way they stared at the space,
knowing what lurked, what might transform

if they seized it whole. I too felt it: my body
dizzy with everything rejected, throwing me
at the feet of something small and majestic.

The Terrace

A partially opened
window in the guesthouse
gave me a glimpse
of a hidden terrace

with its orange tree
in one corner producing
fruit to the music
of a Chinese water clock.

Three cast iron chairs
with backs woven
into copper coloured
quavers sung the chorus.

I wanted to take this song
and watch it paint everything
I had with tranquility,
were it not for an unseen

cloud staring at me straight
in the eye, ready to release
its thunder.

Bird’s Nest Soup

A bangka beached, shushing waves
slapping its hull. Then busyadores jumped

out with rope and poles, making the sign
of the cross before lifting themselves

onto rocks while the birds gorged miles
away on mayflies, wasps and winged white ants.

Fernando moved quickly, feeling the frailty
of every limestone rock as he sprang from one

position to another, judging if the crevice
could accommodate his foot. The sea hissed

like escaping oxygen. Gusts of wind recorded
him hitting the water like a funfair hammer.

Hacked off nests appreciated in value while
he sank; giant crickets chirped unscripted elegies

before swarming over tossed out chicks. The busyadores
laid out their haul on a table at dusk and sorted it into first,

second and third class bundles before sleeping on bamboo
benches as swiftlets returned to their caves, one man

always waking to feathers running along an arm,
having dreamt of Icarus stealing flight and the sun taking

it back.

Note: bangka=outrigger canoe; busyadore=skilled climber

Author’s Bio: Christian Ward is a 30 year old UK-based poet. He recently finished an MA in Creative Writing at Royal Holloway, University of London and his work has appeared in Poetry Wales, The Kenyon Review and elsewhere. He hopes to release his first collection in near future.

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