A, hot pink, babies angry when kissed,
Gummy smile clenching to a scowl,
E, snow blessing the street, a lisped vowel
Hiding midnight’s infidelities, the wife pissed,
Smile (angelic) changing to grimace (foul),
Faint flutter of pulse at the wrist
As the Grim Reaper calls with his damned list.
I, sallow salmon, time to throw in the towel
And get outta here. O, tropical jungle green,
U, blue, lavender, dizzy aquamarine –
Padding from the pool, dripping wet, past
Croaking frogs, pythons, hamburger joints
Covered in vines, then a sign in Chinese that points
To the busy city – lights, people – home at last.
-- John Tranter, first published in The Australian (2013)