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Poem: Courtyard Café

Books & Poetry

A café, a composition and a departure fill this week’s Poet’s Corner contribution from Martha Landman.

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Courtyard Café

for Iona and Jonathan

Laughter echoes off the walls
of That Place in the city
where I steal words like a scavenger bird
and write on autumn sheets
to the smell of deep-fried food.

Watching waiters in black trousers
and short shirts, shoulders tight,
I stretch my words out far and wide,
search the jungles of my mind.

Go deeper and there is no world,
no mermaids in the aquarium,
no horses’ hooves on the beach,
only talk of Attar and glimpses in the mirror,
murmurings of the Muse.

A straw-hatted lady in the corner
breathes shallow,
her wavering hand feeds the pigeons
cooing at her feet.

The sky tumbles through the vines
lights up the table and love poems
flow from my pen.

Soon you will leave for Los Angeles,
these tables will sustain me.

Martha Landman lives in Adelaide after 15 years in north Queensland. Her work has appeared in online journals and anthologies in the UK, US and Australia. She is a member of Friendly Street Poets. Details of her chapbook collection “Between Us” which was released this month in the Ginninderra Press Picaro Poets series, can be found here.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems of up to 40 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to Submissions should be in the body of the email, not as attachments. A poetry book will be awarded to each accepted contributor.

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