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Nocturne #1

by Vahni Capildeo

Dogs bark, at least a block away.

The night is quiet, with crickets.

Nobody has fired a gun

tonight, I notice, nobody

within earshot. Bougainvillea

grows purple, grows white, festooning

the fence with spikes. Black paint flakes off

electric gates. Birds have peep peep

pipitted their new calls long since,

the close-of-day chirrups picked up

from alarm systems, not long since,

and now perfected. The city

keeps changing where the district lies,

seldom within its lines. The hill

shows a few lights, more than it had.

The Savannah uncoils with walks

unwalked, during a friend’s absence.

I’d fly there now. If I hadn’t

eaten so much salt, I’d fly, now.


Nocturne #2

Published: October 2020
Vahni Capildeo

is Writer in Residence at the University of York, where their research focus is on silence. Recent work includes Skin Can Hold (Carcanet, 2019), Odyssey Calling (Sad Press, 2020) and Light Site (Periplum Poetry, 2020), reflecting Capildeo’s interest in place, plurilingualism, and immersive or participatory performance, such as Trinidad’s traditional masquerade.

An Australian and international
journal of ecopoetry and ecopoetics.

Plumwood Mountain Journal is created on the unceded lands of the Gadigal and Wangal people of the Eora Nation. We pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and to elders past, present and future. We also acknowledge all traditional custodians of the lands this journal reaches.