A haiku and a meditation
In all places now
we hear the wind sing of war:
dust will fall for dust.
* * * *
I stepped briefly outside myself
– or so I thought when stepping –
reckoning much that's to be said
needs hearing, as plain as the facts
may seem, as straight down the line.
Pressed for time, a poet's convinced
to cut the chase – even though she knows
pursuit is poem. Eurydice must not surface.
The wolf must, ever-louder groaning, grow.
There are those, even in Canberra,
who would willingly block out the sun:
a slip-slop-slap for Armageddon;
a world that went out in lifestyle.
To them, the self-styled tragics,
I say, 'Your Christ died
on just such a day – so lift your gaze,
at least enough that you can see
your enemy stand, weapon in hand,
a lewd verse for a reprimand,
the one you'd defy – but know
you're in thrall to its every demand:
This is my biro; this is my gun.
This one's for killing; the other's a pun!
And now, the deed is done.
Canberrans know it: stock-still
the suited stand on Capital Hill,
their races run, overcome,
stunned by all the fun.
It's beyond funding, though.
'S bigger than all the glaciers
it shrinks, shatters, heaves, and harrows
– boulders tossed so casually
into chasms, turning, careening,
a squadron of sparrows, dancing
down an air-built thoroughfare,
screaming through countless snows
(below!) below's the answer.
So, too, your taxes, friend:
the chaos'll have those.
So too, our nutra-sweet national anthem:
words more meaning will destroy
what aspirational electors chose.
So, too, our suburbs bright and new:
the coming days'll make
each pneumatic drill-quake,
each dream to bulldoze, but a trifle
beside the force that now
and steadily, daily, gathers shape,
grows, grows – a living culture,
school for all fellows –
and anyroad, who (ever)
really knows how very little
doom a battler can find
in the earth, the air, the sea,
the seed a man sows?
Back inside myself, all's well
or not, as the ayes or nays
may have it. Love, a grammar
of family and friend, knows
no reason for this. My sweetheart
senses an ire that is tired
and forgives with a kiss.
blasts our Alberta farmhouse bed-
room, thundering, rise, rise!
Wipe the tears of all your
bitter dreams from bleary eyes!
Get up all chirpy North American
and greet your hosts so kind!
Bacon's cooking; coffee's brewing;
last night's newlyweds are
on their way. Praise (not to mention
my rays) be: this is a brilliant day!
- FREE: 20 Poets anthology
- 94: EARTHSUBMIT to M Takolander 93: PEACHCOMING SOONwith L Van, G Mouratidis, L Toong 92: NO THEME VIIIwith C Gaskin 91: MONSTERwith N Curnow 90: AFRO AUSTRALIANwith S Umar 89: DOMESTICwith N Harkin 88: TRANSQUEERwith S Barnes and Q Eades 87: DIFFICULTwith O Schwartz & H Isemonger 86: NO THEME VIIwith L Gorton 85: PHILIPPINESwith Mookie L and S Lua 84: SUBURBIAwith L Brown and N O'Reilly 83: MATHEMATICSwith F Hile 82: LANDwith J Stuart and J Gibian 81: NEW CARIBBEANwith V Lucien 80: NO THEME VIwith J Beveridge 57.1: EKPHRASTICwith C Atherton and P Hetherington 57: CONFESSIONwith K Glastonbury 56: EXPLODE with D Disney 55.1: DALIT / INDIGENOUSwith M Chakraborty and K MacCarter 55: FUTURE MACHINES with Bella Li 54: NO THEME V with F Wright and O Sakr 53.0: THE END with P Brown 52.0: TOIL with C Jenkins 51.1: UMAMI with L Davies and Lifted Brow 51.0: TRANSTASMAN with B Cassidy 50.0: NO THEME IV with J Tranter 49.1: A BRITISH / IRISH with M Hall and S Seita 49.0: OBSOLETE with T Ryan 48.1: CANADA with K MacCarter and S Rhodes 48.0: CONSTRAINT with C Wakeling 47.0: COLLABORATION with L Armand and H Lambert 46.1: MELBOURNE with M Farrell 46.0: NO THEME III with F Plunkett 45.0: SILENCE with J Owen 44.0: GONDWANALAND with D Motion 43.1: PUMPKIN with K MacCarter 43.0: MASQUE with A Vickery 42.0: NO THEME II with G Ryan 41.1: RATBAGGERY with D Hose 41.0: TRANSPACIFIC with J Rowe and M Nardone 40.1: INDONESIA with K MacCarter 40.0: INTERLOCUTOR with L Hart 39.1: GIBBERBIRD with S Gory 39.0: JACKPOT! with S Wagan Watson 38.0: SYDNEY with A Lorange 37.1: NEBRASKA with S Whalen 37.0: NO THEME! with A Wearne 36.0: ELECTRONICA with J Jones
- Submission to Cordite 94: EARTH
- NO THEME VIII Editorial
- ‘A means of resistance’: Susie Anderson Interviews Alison Whittaker
- 10 Works by Richard Bell
- Shipwrecks in Modern European Painting and Poetry: Radical Mobilisation of the Motif as Political Protest
- 4 Self-translations by Danijela Trajković
- Brutalism: Poems by Alex Creece
- Imperfect Growth: a Travel Log
- 4 Translated Kim Seung-hee Poems
- Residence: Dwelling with The Shards (an essay)
- The Shards
- in yr swimming pool
- Sonar for Conception
- The slow clock
- nanny on the water
- Vernal Funks & Bluffs
- I’d Have Called Her Sooner
- Call of Summer
- Sunday, call me a squid
- Mother Bird
- The Wrong Colour
- Milk River
- House fitting : surprisingly