Mademoiselle

Venus sits below a contrail necklace
whilst the moon above sighs,
a ring around its lips guiding
shoreline ships back home again
to be met by merry wives.

Walking with the swell in their socks
the sailors tread on land,
trembling souls and uneasy hearts
make for nervous hands.

Their faces have greyed under
a stubble mist, grown out of a
no-mirror-broken-razor rage;
to kiss is to make red,
to be back home is to sleep in a bed.

Tight canyon cheeks are stretched-
flat canvas peaks, tanned bronze
by a sun that runs among
northern hemisphere, north-east sheets.

Chipped lips miss the taste of salt
so drink up the malt and take a rest,
not long from now he'll want
his mistress back, the woman
of the swell, this ocean's mademoiselle.