Bright day throws dark rags of shadows down
to lie gauntlet-still among the grasses;
the rainbow fairy collects her trains and helicopters
and drives them to the coast in her roller-skate car
while the tiny feather-headed one sleeps
the afternoon’s elastic hours away.
Rain clouds go on following the wind’s
goat-track almost ready to bleat their water voices down,
stretch the wool-curl of their fleeces
so rainbow has to be brought past the wet
eve’s drop and dried and nuzzled
until the disappointment tears can be soaked away
her slinky armour realigned
and all our ragged cries hushed down.
When shadow overpowers us
and comes onstage with her horses and stars
all silky with sleep, clearing clouds out
with the magic sweep of her long hair
and the stretching crocodile she keeps at her side
these day-lit hours seem too short
to deserve her, still in our beds
snuggled into sleep’s own glove-fingers.