Getting Better


I’m back in the deck chair in the garden
as you build your zookeeper spaceships
around me. I sip a banana milkshake
as a pheasant eyes me from the steps.
His feathers glint Japanese in the light.
Here we are safe from shotguns, needles,
bone scans. Of course there is still
a burning in my chest, muscle cramps
that catch the breath, the challenge
of getting out of the chair when my arms
won’t hold the weight they’re supposed to.

I watch a bee buzz inside a flame of flower.
You have made me a necklace
of rainbow pasta. You tell me you wish
you had a nurse gun to make everyone better.
You feed us chocolate and suck the layers
of colour from your ice lolly while asking
if I know more than you. A little bit,
I reply, while thinking how much there is
to learn from recuperating in the sunshine
with a small boy and his shining lego.

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