Peter Adair – Growing Habits

Growing Habits

Spring sun. We grow again, push through soil,
devouring light and water.
Like Archillea millefolium,
the ferny flower which dies back
in winter but revives in spring.
I stroke its buds.

Or the seeded ones, the fresh arrivals
cradled in hundreds of plastic pots.
We nurse them towards the light
until they grow on us. Petals.
Healing leaves. Roots
firming up in plastic heat.

The hose hisses, drips on the ground.
The flowers breathe in, breathe out.
In need of air and sky
I step outside our polythene temple
astonished that I breathe,
astonished to reach another May.

So let me gaze at Sanvitalia speciosa
with buttercup yellow flowers
perfect for baskets and bowls,
its habits unobtrusive.
It doesn’t grow too high or fast.
It lies low. It survives.

Peter Adair lives in Bangor, Co Down.  Pen Points Press has distributed a broadsheet of his winning poem in the 2015 Translink Smart Movers competition.  A poem is forthcoming in Panning for Poems at

Peter Adair – Signing Off

Signing Off

Deaf to the clack of all elected tongues
that yelp from benches and boke promises,
he stares at a tie, a rope, that claw
slapping shut his file. Freed, he runs from eyes,
bombs the building, coffins the mouths
that mouth and mouth of jobs that don’t exist.
The affluent air asphyxiates. The sun
paces about its cage. He takes the wrong turn
into a street of screeching birds, shuts out
the light, burrows through the sheets. His fist
could crush this town and smash its face.
(The file is stamped, passed on, marked a case
for action.) The wardrobe creaks its welcome home,
fingers of darkness fumble at his throat.



Peter Adair lives in Bangor, Co Down.  He has been a freelance writer, BBC script reader and bookseller.  He is now on disability benefit.