Mister Moon at 2pm

My friendliest visitor
Did not have an appointment
Yet clearly was excited
To meet me in the flesh

Proceedings were informal
He sniffed with satisfaction
On finding things of interest
Concealed in my effects

Unnerving his companion
Sat waiting at a distance
He boldly stood to trespass
Without much bashfulness

Receiving with enjoyment
And some sign of quick affection
My attentions to his person
At this more than welcome guest

Family Tree

I do not know their faces
Nor the shape of their hopes
Smiles or holy days
Though their names are familiar

Their dead branches whisper to me
Cut off long before I grew
To stretch my own limbs skyward
Drinking in the warmth of life

Pollarded by the Shoah
They were dead wood
Judged and executed
Discarded, pulped

Their elder fruits
Dropped, dried,
Repackaged and distributed
To nourish the living

Old shoes, clothes, handbags
Torahs pulped for toilet paper
To wipe the arse of the aggressor
Marching through ancestral Europe

Kicks supplied on demand
At discount rates
An eye for an eyeful
A bullet for a broken bone

Until I stand here
Weary of remembrance
Sighing in the comfort of
Survivor’s guilt

Read Primo Levi and think of
Stage directions for a ‘war’ film
Complain about my own
Petty frustrations

Knowing we can never again
Afford to plead our ignorance
Of the mechanised
Bestiality of man

Nature Study

My cat is not a member
Of the RSPB
He sits on the sill
Sunning himself
Watching and waiting
For fledglings to flop
And fall out of their nest.
The robin that visits
My hanging bistro
For a quick and seedy
Beakful of millet
Pales at his shadow
And flutters away
Avoiding the sharp claws
And sadistic purr
Of the resident bouncer.
The bird-like appetites
Of my feathered clientele
Vanish, as tense and flighty
They fall prey to silence
The predator’s presence
Betrayed by the twitch
Of a whisker
The gently flicking tail
Of the sleek, well-groomed
Panther in the window