Time Traveller

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TV scenes flash on the screen of my mind
As I slowly start to relax and unwind.
Sweet frangipani has scented the air
And palm trees wave spindly hands in the air.
Sky’s perfect canvas of crimson and blue
Is brushed by cotton ball clouds drifting through.
Waters of turquoise and deep blue most royal
Inspire the timid and lovers most loyal.
A constant parade of those seeking the sun,
They come in their mobs and their twos and their ones.

And though I may seem altogether right here,
I’m split largely in between time zones, I fear.
Lost in a fog of my sacrificed sleep,
My body clock chimes with a resonance deep.
Tomorrow, I’ll once more be up in the air,
Leaving behind the poor Earthlings their cares.
Soon enough, though, I’ll be back on the ground
And by the real world I will once more be found –
The visions of places and people I’ve seen
Will seem little more than a half-faded dream.

Stephen Tomkins
29 September 2016
Honolulu

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Resistance Is Futile

sleep-deprived-workers

Slumber wakes inside her room,
Her soothing Siren song seducing,
Drawing me into the gloom,
The sweetest nothingness inducing.

Down into the void I fall,
Weightless in the inky dark.
It doesn’t frighten me at all –
Waiting for a dream to spark.

Once aflame, it rages on,
Sweeping me just where it will.
Abruptly, the inferno’s gone,
And, once again, the world is still.

Just how can sleep be so seductive,
Even when I do resist?
Succumb, I must, lest she’s destructive,
Ruling me with silken fist.

Stephen Tomkins
16 January 2016
Sydney

Photo credit:
lucien.uchicago.edu
sharperiron.org

With a View To Breakfast

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Motionless ships set on sparkling jewels,
Brilliant-cut diamonds in deep azure pools.
Closer to shore, the worshippers bathe
As the Sun-God ascends over white sand and wave.
And framing it all, as if by design,
A towering pair of lush Norfolk Pines,
Their branches and finger-like leaves reach above,
Beseeching the Sun-God for life-giving love.
Removed from it all, by a clear glassy wall,
Sit I, like a scientist, cold yet in thrall
Of a view unexpected and perfect, serene,
Hypnotic reliever of stress, evergreen.

Stephen Tomkins
21 January 2016
Wollongong

Photo credits:
retaillawadvisor.com.au
secrets magazine.com.au

 

The World (and Other Trivialities)

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I reach into my ancient bag,
My old umbrella, for to seek.
From disuse, it’s now a rag
And, when it rains, it’s sure to leak.

Of what use is the outside world?
Not air-conditioned like at home,
The elements against me hurled
If I decide outdoors to roam.

Why can’t the world be more serene?
It’s certainly a pleasant blue.
Vindictive, vengeful, it can seem,
Its violence is never through.

Torrential rain some people cop,
While others meet a baking drought.
Snow and ice – it doesn’t stop –
And howling winds our efforts flout.

Our greatest minds can surely do
Much better than they have ‘til now.
With climate change, perhaps it’s true?
We’ve made a start, so take a bow!

Stephen Tomkins
4 December 2015
Sydney

Picture credits:
moonshotpr.com
pics-about-space.com

Cecil

Zimbabwe Lion Killed

Cecil was a friendly lion,
Never harmed a living soul.
Didn’t stop a Dentist flyin’
In to seek his huntin’ goal.

He traveled up the Root Canal,
Noting his extraction point,
Cleaned and polished rifle pal,
Drilled with leaden needlepoint.

The tragic death of Cecil was
The catalyst for much debate.
Hunted down the Dentist ‘cause
His clients sought to litigate.

The death of thousands, strange to say,
Fails to register at all.
Unpeople, on our conscience, weigh
Hardly anything at all.

Stephen Tomkins
14 August 2015
Jakarta

Night Flight

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A Cheshire Cat moon beams down from on high
And slowly sinks lower and lower in the sky;
His comforting smile rewarding my thoughts
While beset by machines with their ones and their noughts.

The blackest of seas swallows Cat and his smile
Like a red crescent whale diving deep for a while.
Pinpricks of light in an ebony veil
Disinterestedly shimmer, unchanging and pale.

Air hisses past like a rain-swollen stream,
While I seem suspended in a motionless dream.
Time passes by at a glacial pace.
The miles that we fly disappear without trace.

Bodiless voices speak on in my ears,
Silence again as the frequency clears.
A voice now beside me, my reverie breaks,
Suggesting a coffee to keep us awake.

The view from his window, no different to mine,
But does he perceive what I think is so fine?
The weather tonight is so clear and benign;
It’s not always like this when flying the Line!

Stephen Tomkins
11 July 2014

Midnight Departure

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Pinpricks of white in an indigo sky,
Stars twinkling at us, they’re not at all shy.
A platinum moon shines ethereal light
On towering battlements, black, edged in white.
Cathedrals of Cumulus, silent, imposing,
At eight miles a minute, we’re rapidly closing.
From deep inside, there’s a bright flash of light,
Perhaps it’s the incense that chose to ignite?
Threading the needle between them we go
While back in the cabin, you hardly would know.
A few hours later, the sky pales ahead
And rapidly morphs into deepest blood red.
Below us the ground turns a purplish hue,
And gradually features start coming to view.
Orange, then pink and finally gold,
The sun then ascends, it’s a sight to behold.

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Stephen Tomkins
9 February 2015

Ocean View

93. Heavy seas at dusk, Imperial Beach, CA-L

Wave after wave, the invasion continues,
Pounding the shore with ephemeral sinews.
Unceasing, the aqueous army advances;
Observing, it’s clear that the whole thing entrances.

The beach battles on in it’s own unique way,
Seemingly letting the sea win the day.
An unlikely defence is so expertly mounted
By armies of sand, in their legions uncounted.

Invaders advance and retreat once again;
The battle continues, a war without end.
A paradox of tumult that somehow brings peace,
A meeting of foes world-renowned for caprice.

Much has been said about maritime moods:
One day she sleeps and the next day she broods.
Perpetual motion, a palette unbounded,
Don’t turn your back or you may just get pounded!

All through the day and then late at night
The sea’s roar continues, but now out of sight.
At some point, the wind’s airy music crescendoes,
Battering huts with tin roofs and small windows.

Transient humans, the sea will remain
Completely unmoved by our joy and our pain.
Her riches we harvest but never can tame
Poseidon unchanging but never the same.

Some say she’s moody but I disagree:
There’s never been artwork that’s quite like the sea!
With every whitecap and every hue,
A masterful canvas no human could do!

Stephen Tomkins
18 December 2014