Image by Ergita Sela


Landscape with Animals_edited.jpg

come back

We walked past horses, enslaved and again freed.
We passed them in the fields, and didn’t recognise their potency.


We wrapped our nakedness in white gauze, so that,
had we been looking,
we could only have seen
the portent of our potence,

We turned God into a petulant autocratic baby,
pouting because nobody came to his party,


We didn’t say goodbye to each other,
nor ever really hello,
But we bought that car,
that house,
as we paved all the walkways,
that never gave way to walks.

Didn’t replace the broken string of silenced music,
and wondered if that was a scream we heard.


Get a debt,
This is what our existence depends on.
nine to five, eight to six,
seven to 7
to 11.

This is what our existence depends on.

Don’t stop by.
Don’t say hello or goodbye.
Don’t stop! Buy!


Buy a mask.
Hide the portent of grace,
and the face.



but as long as your eyes meet mine,
we see the corner crinkles of warmth,
we can remember what lies behind the travails.


Look, maybe a heaven freed from vapour trails
will help us hear again the sky.


Come back, my first love!
I want to free a horse with you!


estledaire 21.05.2020 -

rotated teddybears

Happy Children

You rotated your teddies in bed each night,
Made sure not one of them might,
get jealous, hurt or heartsore,
thinking you loved another more.


In blind-man’s bluff, you didn't give away the game,
as I silently hung from the door frame,
you didn't tell them of my hiding place,
though it meant you lost the chase.

We pulled back our lips once we'd sung,
our mouths stained slush-puppy blue,
I laughed as you wriggled your tongue,
long before I knew what else it could do.

Your eyes got that red stare,
from the pool chlorine that bleached our hair,
in summers, as long as your legs,
in summers as long as your legs.

We rotated our teddies and our legs grew.
And it’s nothing new, (it’s all I knew)
We rotated our teddies and our legs grew.
Didn’t know you were part of the seasons too.
Didn’t know you were part of the seasons too.

I knew you secretly wanted to skip rope with me,
so we skipped school,spent days in a tree.
I took a shine to you, shining up classy
And you mourned with me when I lost my glassy.

Girls swapped paper at the fishpond,
And you snickered, knowing I would respond,
but you let me choose the invitation bond,
for the day we forged our marriage bond.

We rotated our teddies and our legs grew.
And it’s nothing new, (it’s all I knew)
We rotated our teddies and our legs grew.
Didn’t know you were part of the seasons too.
Didn’t know you were part of the seasons too.

Each season promised to bring,
Elastics or collecting and swapping something.
We watching the kids playing hopscotch,
As we took turns with your apple lollipop.
in summers, as long as your legs.

Riding bikes as rain pattered,
Sitting on the roof eating biscuit batter,
Seasons have come and gone,

And one day our legs were long.

Maybe I’ve lost them,
but in my mind,
I don’t find
the names of the marbles you shined.

Elastics sagged, quick sticks slowed down,
those kids skipping rope are no longer around.

We rotated our teddies till our legs had grown.

It was nothing new, it was all we'd known.

We rotated our teddies and I never knew,
Never knew you were part of the seasons too.

Each spring and autumn brought something new,
It was all we knew, they were all too few.
Didn’t know you were part of the seasons too.
Didn’t know you were part of the seasons too.

And like the summers that came to an end,
You’d be gone too, my childhood friend.

estledaire 02.02.2016


latent transfusion

Where did you come from,
my child of the morning?
Dawns song sweetly released the balloon of you,
and I am moulded clay again.


Yet, though this tie may be cut,
another thickening one binds you to me,
and you are mould-woven too
into a shape that will pain in its severance;
as you cast the colour of your wings
onto a small patch of warm, dry earth.

I need not think of that now,
only look inside and glimpse the possible you,
alongside the possible me.


snap my silky threads pressed into a pale, yellow heart
that does not beat.
First, myself released, stretch and glide!

Set the edge off my teeth,
and turn to grapes that are not bitter,
so that suddenly the wine
running out of your mouth,as you laugh,
is sweet.

I would you inherited royal joy,
so I will cry a beggars tears for you,
and then launched;


arc :
crimson-life-colour-drawn and mad-joy-breathing,
tongue drawing praises of love to our Lord.


Transformation before transfusion.


 estledaire: 1994 - 1995

Image by Anne Lambeck
Image by NASA

fearful order

The flower bubbled,
as it turned at the centre of the universe of my revelation.

Recognition of the truth fountained into my understanding.

Some spring knew the ocean
and despite having only a knowledge of earth, I felt dry;
everything pants for the sea!

I put my foot on the path, You swept!
I could not see,
yet I fall endlessly and resonating notes whirl in blasting light.
Softly, warmly the pain of joy.



Lost myself …


in Your immensity


Found myself…



in Your love.

each day leaves exultingly demand,
lilies expose their passionate desperation,
a snow robe on a mountain is rendered breathless,
while the rocks and stones real.


in the ecstasy of simple being,
a moths wing shouts as loud as a mighty avalanche
and the pocked rocks are sand-spray-ground by the waves
in a revel tumultuous




Cry out earth that peaks and sea that flats.
World that valleys and ocean that mountains to Him
thrash and scream!

Yet they laugh in the hot culmination of this chaotic,

Do not raise me!
It is honour beyond all my life to wash Your feet.
To even touch You,
cry my tears onto You,
is enough, yet…


No Lord, no!

I fear You make a divine fool of me.
Though I must have You, in this all,
can I ever be anything but a mad, servant woman?

estledaire 1994

seasonless summer

The long winter dragged till we despaired of there ever being another summer. But there was, and now I know it began because you arrived.

It was as if, especially for you, Cape Town stopped the rain and created a pocket of timelessness. I knew this when the rain, usually so uncharacteristic at that time of year, began again on the day you left.


Summer and magical light touched everything when you were here. Soon after your departure I watched video footage of Lion’s Head just after twilight on Hogmanay. The usual furore from the street quieting temporarily, before gaining momentum again, trying to hurtle toward a new year, as if crashing through the 31st would burst us back into time.


I watched the images on the screen.

Captured there, the sky’s blue almost forgotten, verging on complete black, but a glance of the day still in its deep indigo.


Even when looking at it in that medium, removed from the reality, I could still feel how different the timeless mountain was then, black and dotted with lights, like stars.


Even just thinking about it now, I feel it again, even though that same magic-lit mountain became, for a time, lifeless after you left, Cape Town rendered flat.


Things that were sure before, were pale, insubstantial, they did not provide a good enough reason to justify us having to leave what we didn’t even know.


That seasonless summer was unlike the time that surrounded it, a sparkling prime, bracketed by rain-fall. While we were there, it seemed as though this was the way the world was and always would be, a whole lifetime happened, the world irreversibly changed.


A closed bracket of rainfall and I could not reconcile myself to my life going on as usual, forcing me to forget the unforgettable  to remember the ongoing routine that I wished to forget.


While we were singing tonight, a hush fell so markedly, that it was loud. It was that slowing of everything that is heavy, torrential rain.


And somehow it eased me.

As if I weren’t indoors,

listening as my breathing slowed and heart rate calmed.


As if I were out in the drenching of it,

finding, somewhere in the benevolent storm,

a place dry, but walled by a rain that drowned out all else,


A place, all be it only this quiet, tonight,

in which I could commune with the timeless place
where I met you,
and say goodbye.

estledaire 2002-2003

Copy of IMG_20170419_184720_edited.jpg

Kapstadt, 2002, als ich nach Hause fuhr, sah ich Lionshead vor einem wundersamen Sonnenuntergang silhouettiert und sang vor Freude.

So wurde You geboren, ein Lied, das die Schönheit unserer natürlichen Welt feiert und Dankbarkeit für die vielen Segnungen ausdrückt, die wir um uns herum haben.