It’s like punctuating the autumn sky
as I peg washing to the sagging lines
wispy white clouds speed past
the pale green new shoots of
the lime tree and the curry tree.
There’s a comma for a cumulus.
There’s an apostrophe bird
above the mouse-like cloud.
The sky has so much to say!
I stand, a wet towel in one hand
and an old wooden peg
in the other until my wife calls:
What’s taking you so long?!
Andrew Burke is an Australian poet who has lived most of his life in Perth. After his birth in Melbourne in 1944, Burke's family moved west to expand the family business. In his teens, Burke read Kerouac and Ginsberg and other 'Beat' writers, and they gained his interest more than the literature he was studying at school. He published his first short story at 18. He has written on a daily basis ever since—stories, plays, poems, and—to feed family—advertising material and videos. From 1990, Burke taught creative writing and allied subjects at universities, TAFE colleges and writing centres. In 2006, he and his wife Jeanette travelled to China where they taught at Shanxi Normal University, Linfen, and, on their return, they taught indigenous children in The Kimberley area of North West Australia. He now dedicates life fulltime to writing.