Friday 15 May 2015


Ben Nicholson, Cornish Port, 1928

It's the overhanging fluorescence
even when the sun
is tip toeing on blossom.

It's the churning of the pump
grinding out the hour
even as the robin sings.

Red breast, snow petals;
it's the colours that I miss.
In here, we are all in blue.

The tea man came back
three times to ask me -
did I say coffee or tea? Tea!

Gabriel is studying to be a biomedical scientist.
I worry for his scrambled brain.
Mine is already scrambled

by blue walls and fluorescence.
And the long slow road
the wolf and I are walking.

© Shaista Tayabali, 2015

(When you look at Ben Nicholson's Cornish Port above, what do you see? I see a goose with a bright orange beak, carrying a village on her back, and swirling the waters with one naughty foot… pareidolia, I have learnt this is called - a phenomenon of the brain perceiving images that aren't necessarily there/real/true… I have promised to write an article on brain fog for the Cambridgeshire Lupus newsletter. I have plenty to say about my foggy brain!)

Friday 8 May 2015


In some part of me I must believe
nothing can be broken.
What else explains this carelessness?

It was the tiniest clay pot
made for seeds and
the tiniest tree.

I am manifesting it whole
in this poem, so it knows
it was loved the way it was

but also the way it is
now, exposed innards,
cracked through.

Someone will put you together,
I tell the flower pot, and myself.
Mostly, I tell myself.

© Shaista Tayabali, 2015

posted for dverse poets, open link night

images of kettle's yard, cambridge