Bequeathable Sanitoria by James Walton

Bequeathable Sanitoria

Don’t be offended
if as an old love song

you’re the needle in my arm
the messy heart and anchor tattoo

that won’t be scratched out
of these polished corridors

locked down night and day
awaiting the scuff of attendants

as they whistle away
‘hear, I’m going back to Massachusetts’

you’re the straightjacket
I can’t shake loose of

borrowed shoes for romance
not enough hair for style

out of the high storey window
my second-hand jacket open

phalanger spread flying cover
the last cast iron bed home

if you were there to hold me
in a wayward parable of rain.


James Walton
is an Australian poet published in newspapers, and many journals, and anthologies. Short listed twice for the ACU National Literature Prize, a double prize winner in the MPU International Poetry Prize, Specially Commended in The Welsh Poetry Competition – his collection ‘The Leviathan’s Apprentice’ was published in 2015.James Walton was a lot of things. A librarian, a farm labourer, a cattle breeder, and mostly a public sector union organizer. He is published in many anthologies, journals, and newspapers. He is now invisible in his seventh decade.

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