Runner-up, Nakata Brophy Prize: A dance of hands

You and I

were the lychees

sucked from blistered shells,

and navel to cheek

park sleeps,


the skating of fingers

over cracked palms

and the tempura kisses

awaiting trains.


We were

the space held

so that traumas

could surface,

speak and heal,


and the rising of chest

as spine lowered

and breath slowed.


You and I,

were the footsteps

through crowded bookshops

on sacred Sundays

our tales untold,


we were

the welding of wine to tongue

in an unnamed pub.


You and I

were handmade cakes,

window notes,

pocket poems,


and bodies coiled

to rising sun

or the calm

of late night story.


We were time-travellers

with slow motion lips,

eyes talking

over ginger tea sips,

and hearts euphoric

on eurythmic beat skips.





Kirli Saunders

Kirli Saunders is a proud Gunai woman. She is the Manager of Poetic Learning and Cultural Liaison at Red Room Poetry. Kirli founded the Poetry in First Languages project. Her first children’s picture book The Incredible Freedom Machines has been selected for Bologna Book Fair 2018.

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