The Bruised Garden

Not the old atomic eyes of Nagasaki

Nor the eardrum bursts of a boiling Jap boy

Not the sick sweet smelling showers

Nor the lock-jawed wails of a fleshly picked Jew

Not that time

Nor that tide

Not the Pol Potted Blood Fields of Cambodia

Nor the unwanted in vain valour of a Green Beret

Not the ancient aged opium war

Nor a greened human hill of potato blight

Not that time

Nor that tide

Not the killing fields of Nauru

Nor the unforgiven unemployed

Not the long forgotten drug addled poor

Nor their tears remembered in time

Not this time

Nor this tide

Not this time




Even He

Beneath the sea of the hand picked screen

Under the half light sand of blue light

Flickered across our news soaked brain 

We are not safe   

We are not safe   


Never safe 

In our signaled solitary stain.


All our children now safe in pillowed dreams

A white linen silent soft sanctuary  

While the baby beached whale boy

A sandy silent soft refugee

A little egg buried in the damp sand

Unsafe from his father's hand


Our unsheltered, undefended toy.


Even He with his starlight wiry wings

Could not this night stay in starry flight

Lost in his Mother's arms of darkened fears

You are not safe

You are not safe


His future felled forever

By his boy's bathed watered tears.


And all our unshielded, unguarded loves

Forever, forever in this silent bay

We promised safe haven and harbour

A sandy silent soft effigy

Forever fallen in the sand


Never safe

Our unheeded, needed heart locker.






An upturned eyeball

a curious ocular stance

peering at me

through those bars


A sudden flutter of wings

a feather wave breaking

against beak

another glance sheathed

in an oyster eyelid


So you turn your

back to me now

my tears,

like so many droppings

a tribute to your arrogance


Listen to the sound

of freedom,

the crunching of seed

and cuttlefish

as the wind moans

through the open

cage door




The Waiting Tree


This is what my eyes now see,

A new vision

All things from the life before

Now gone

All former desires now quenched.



In one's mouth

The shedding of one's skin.


All things are now set 

In our shared intimacy

Our recorded ecstasy in 

The Book of Memories. 


Our shared page in the heavens.


Inside our stolen moonlight.


I have a new face,

Reflected in your own

New eyes possessed by yours

Windows of a life before you

Are now boarded.


Like waking from a forgotten dream.


The winds of an empty country.


This is what my eyes now see,

Seated in the shade of 


Waiting Tree.


Its branches

Allowing just enough space,


To still see the stars.




Hands Across The Clouds


I placed my hands across the clouds

My arms embraced the sun,

To sit and watch the dark world turning

It was all I could do,

To keep the sky from burning.


I placed my feet on top of a hill

To walk the path where the lovers lay dreaming,

To sit and watch our silent wars waging

It was all I could do,

To keep the moon from raging.


I closed my eyes against the dark night

To shed tears upon the sea,

To hear love’s echo softly calling

It was all I could do,

To stop the stars from falling.


I placed my face into the west wind

Turned my ear to the groaning ground

To feel the earth softly shaking

It was all I could do,

To keep my heart from breaking.


© Mark Tarren


Bio: Mark Tarren is a poet and writer who has recently escaped the big city and now resides in rural North Queensland Australia. He loves to read, write love sonnets and drink red wine.  Website: