I walk in this World

By | 1 July 2006

I walk in This World.
Polythene bags wrapped about tree-stumps
along the flooded creek are wreaths
upon a poet's magnificent conceit
that this stream was Melbourne's Indus.
I put words into John Anderson's mouth:
“As I walk in this world ferals offer me
Lebanese flat-bread sandwiches.
They invite me to their cave.
I tell them to be careful around the Aboriginal
paintings & carvings. They're really
very nice especially when I agree
to dance with them to celebrate the full moon.
They say they're not Pagans.”

I walk in This World.
I look into the flooded creek.
I lose my balance momentarily
and hang onto the ledge.
From the station to the bridge
the footsteps of a woman I passed at the subway
echo at my heels.
I put words into her mouth:
“As I walk in this world a man staggers
on the bridge ahead of me
then hobbles even more slowly home.
I wonder if it's all a ruse?
But if he thinks he can jump me
he's made a big mistake.
I'm never without my capsicum spray.
I hope he knows how to pray.”

I walk in This World.
No one else around.
The alsatian from the first house at the top of the road
barks angrily once and then greets me.
I put words into her mouth:
“I thought you were another one.
The one whose death's already done.
But one who follows you doesn't know sun from moon
nor how to absorb moonlight like sunshine
as sometimes I see you doing
inside this eyefull that's hidden
behind the bars our master's raised
to protect us from the street's mindless shrug.”

I walk in This World
neither master nor minion
like a Johnny Onion Man wheeling his bike
around the suburb's streets
happier with the cold & rain since I understood
this is my one & only life.

The words in my mouth
are the truths breath winnows from devouring air.
They would sound like an unaccompanied fife
in the end-of-the-millennium's gale
or the tinniest notes of a penny-whistle
scattered like breadcrumbs for the squabbling pigeons
at midday on a crowded square.

I walk in This World
some might say carelessly
caring more & more about less & less.

This entry was posted in 25: COMMON WEALTH and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Related work:

Comments are closed.