Autumn Tossed in Winter & Other Poems

Autumn tossed in winter

opening the door to let the dog out. cold creeping inward like a clammy hand and bedclothes. last night the first frost fell like petals - I drove to work looking at pictures of leaves. all gone now. then the daylight thaw like autumn tossed into winter and ice among the aircurrents instead of on the lawn. the dog is barking at the garden wall. it will be a minute before she's in and feeling satisfied. in the kitchen I stretch my legs to where the back door draft can reach them. imagine it's the weekend and you've just washed your hands.

Wine by streetlight

I didn't know entirely how the electric worked. I'd been there just a week or so and when it turned off I supposed it was something with the grid. turned over one corner and put aside my book. finished my glass of wine by streetlight; decided perhaps there must be a seperate circuit. went to the bathroom and then sat down, looking at the wall. there was nothing to do; I didn't do it. the fish bobbed in their tank like potatoes - I suppose they supposed it was night time. it was 6pm in winter, the world a cup of coffee, and it was half an hour before the lights turned on. someone had gone and paid at the meter, I learned later. that's how the electric worked. there was a key and a place for receipts and a rota. I got up and checked the fridge and tried my charger. sat back down with the book and found my place ok.

Summer was on the table.

somehow I managed the key, even with my elbows full of groceries - bread, beer, butter and potatoes; all the bulky usuals, balanced like seals on a rock. reaching the kitchen I pinned my giggles in - I'd gone five minutes and Summer was on the table - she'd gotten up somehow, and now she couldn't get down.

flashing from side to side, she sniffed things, her tail batting at empty glasses and turning over unwashed bowls, her head anxious, twisting, and the shape of a hot cross bun. such comedy. three days with a new puppy and still I enjoy coming home. summer came in through the windows and Summer struggled against it. the light caught her golden fur like freshly toasted bagels.

I managed the groceries onto the counter and turned around as she wailed at me, careful to get a picture before I helped her down.

DS Maolalai has been nominated four times for Best of the Net and three times for the Pushcart Prize. His poetry has been released in two collections, "Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden" (Encircle Press, 2016) and "Sad Havoc Among the Birds" (Turas Press, 2019). He has been writing poetry and short fiction for the past five or six years. His writing has appeared in such publications as 4'33', Strange Bounce and Bong is Bard, Down in the Dirt Magazine, Out of Ours, The Eunoia Review, Kerouac's Dog, More Said Than Done, Star Tips, Myths Magazine, Ariadne's Thread, The Belleville Park Pages, Killing the Angel and Unrorean Broadsheet, by whom he was twice nominated for the Pushcart Prize. His Twitter is @diarmo1990