At first they’re ghosts,
puffy eyed and white as money,
unpeeling themselves from the cocoon of the plane.

Then they are red as shellfish,
wearing shades and fear
as if their flight hibernation
were still clinging
and predators were crouched
behind every door.

Then after a few days of sun,
stupid in the heat,
they flick notes and order cokes
and beers before midday,
and lie idle with a book rested
on the bridge of their nose.

Then they eat out:
breakfast, lunch and dinner, dispensing currency as if
they weren’t sure what it meant,
fingers fumbling like a stutter’s punctuated speech.

And then their skin
becomes brown and golden
and they find their wits
and barter skill, becoming fluid.
Yet still they are adrift our money, and play careless with phones beyond our reach and watches from TV and jewlery adorning, as if they inhabited another world where affluence is a normal, everyday right
not a rarity for the people.


copyright 2016 Ben Truesdale & distilledvoice


Drift Dive On A Coral Wall

A fan worm spreads out its feathery tentacles to collect the plentiful nutrient.

Coral polyps reach in to the current
and grab minuscule particles, while in symbiosis with the sun, they feel green algal blood oxygenate their livelihood.

Palatial sponges sift and gulp
vast quantities of the plankton soup.

Encrusting species cling to every
projection, cliff face and under hang, ever tasting blue movement.

Flecks of fish in sinosoidal pulse
weave and dance on the constant
flow, and shoal in bodies of mirroring.

Anemones and soft corals loose in
the waft, put up their ploom and
await sustenance borne upon the
liquid conveyor.

And more fish flutter in plethora of
colour and swim like May cherry petals fall.

One might infer trust, if a thought
were at all buoyant on the coral wall but thoughts aren’t currency
underwater, and to think is to divide from the source of it all. Yet the coral wall endures as ever it has. And millimetre coral growth spans perfect meters in a statement of enrichment sustained.

Only man conceptualises a synario in opposition to what the corals and the fish simply know.


copyright 2016 Ben Truesdale & distilledvoice

Robinson Crusoe


Palms swoop to blue utopia
And sands are refined powders
For the wave washed feet.
And sea water is full spectrum
Aqua marine, visiting every
Denomination between
Palest lagoon and deep oceanic.
And the fish are straight from Eden,
As is each paradise bird,
Paint pallet dipped to definition
By God’s own artful hand.

And from a spring, among rocks,
In the shade of ancient trees,
Sweet water froths and gurgles
To a pool in which a man
Might wash his skin
Of all the sins his choices
Have brought and indelibly marked,
And rise anew,
His face clean, his mind refreshed
As the unlearned infant child
Comes naked and without a thing
In to the clutches of this island world.


Copyright 2016 Ben Truesdale & distilledvoice



With a face from the front cover of the National Geographic the old man carries the burden of paddy baskets with entrepreneurial spirit, balancing his load for each photographer and grinning with a toothy and well practised smile. More than anyone else, he knows the value of authenticity and clucks eagerly for the next shutter click to capture his own in the stillness of film.


copyright 2016 Ben Truesdale & distilledvoice

Old Boat


Half a boat
Long ago dragged
To moulder on the tide line,
Relaxes in splinters
Shed like bark.

One day
They’ll be but bevelled plank
Jutting from the sand
And a fibrous thought
Left in the memory

Or perhaps
Another wreck
Lent sideways
And slack upon its keel,
Fading in the inevitable time.


Copyright 2016 Ben Truesdale & distilledvoice



In the miraculous fish
That come again and again
Like tide to the table
Forever sustained
And always providing
A predictable nourishment,
We encounter
The earthbound principle
Of abundance
Found in habitat
The world over.

If only we could open our eyes
To the reality of the fish
And discard
All those meagre imposters
Who swim the dark waters
Of our fearful minds,
Whispering demise
Instead of flourishing
On currents
Of forever replenishing
And upwellings of bringing
That swell in offering
Despite our reluctance to see.


Copyright 2016 Ben Truesdale & distilledvoive

Bougainvillea Cascade


Over most the world
She cascades,
Ever and always
Downward she falls,
And yet sometimes
In her ramblings she climbs,
With rings on every single finger
And butterflies in dreams,
Settling as momentary flowers
And garlands lifted beyond.
O she’s beautiful in her fringes
And ethereal reaches,
Beautiful in her bow
And salutation to the sun.


Copyright 2016 Ben Truesdale & distilledvoice