Saying Goodbye in Vladivostok
Your hat glowed amber, catching the last light
of a drowning sun, the sea stiff and still, creaked behind us.
Night lamps began to spark, skittering over ice.
Hunched fishermen trudged their grey way home
and through falling snowflakes we heard howling.
A last freezing night, searching
for red wine in hot, empty bars.
We settled for Baltika and vodka.
Loss crouched ready, silent between us,
its cold, sodden fur started to drip.
Demon Seated, at the Tretyakov
Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow.
I find him, high in the white room,
silent between sprays of colour.
The women stand, pale as swans.
In the cafe we don't speak, yet.
My wine glass drips on the table,
his fingers stroke and flick away.
My hair lies hot, tense on my neck.
He smells of ice and Black Russians,
he broods, his bronze begins to fade,
his face twists dark and thunder roils.
If you have any thoughts on these poems, Cathy Baker would be pleased to hear them.