How to wrap a memory
Alive with the brilliance of tropical birds, sarongs
dance among the patterns of palm leaves
as waves turn turquoise, brown to white
ruffling the edge of the Caribbean, her skin
silky, lazy smooth touching Costa Rica, Cuba
trading last night’s violence for the hush
of a rippling shore, as black men, glistening,
take a firm grip on the rope, pull in the net.
I gave up worry the moment I sat under
the shade of this palm leaf parasol, to listen
to the story of the sea…So, choose the finest
fibre of a hummingbird’s nest, weave yourself
a sheer veil, paint it with echoes of birdsong
draw in the corners – keep it in hiding.
Steve Walter has performed shows at the Brighton and Edinburgh Festival Fringes, with spoken word, music and song, since 2008, based on his first book: Fast Train Approaching… a powerful, yet good humoured, account of life during and after breakdown and recovery, and later, drawing on other people’s stories in Voices: mental health survivors, carers, therapist, family and friends (both published by Chipmunkapublishing). His second pamphlet of poetry, When the Change Came, was published by Indigo Dreams in 2016, and his long poem, Gaia 2020, was published by Making Connections Matter in 2018.