The only thing I drank was stout beer.
I drank it compulsively,
I called it my 'milk'.
Now I've had 3 bottles and it feels ok so I'll go for some more.
I ran pell-mell to the bottle-o!
With each leap my leg-ligaments achieved a kind of ecstasy,
a kind of mild pain.
And as I ran, I secrungered sums of saliva in my mouth,
I spat 'the food' onto that street there.
I walked into the bottle-o and I watched an insect bounce
arrhythmically off a light-bulb, like a buzzing moon.
It made me laugh a tad,
I looked at
him; that other guy but he didn't laugh (Plainly: only the jokes
I laugh at are up to the current standards.)
'I prefer coke mixed from
a syrup,' he explained to his girl.
I bought some excellent stout beer made in South Australia,
my favourite kind; 'Southwark',
and as I walked home I saw a vagrant and considered myself
to be the artist coz I looked at that ugly, haggard old man
as if he was a thing of beauty.
(I was filled to the brim, I thought, with no talent.)
At home, I sat at my desk and watched a cockroach for a while.
The cockroach, I imagined
as a solid shell of crystal charcoal.
But then I just squashed it into a tissue didn't I.
Yes, I did.
And the temperature was just perfect.
I was cake-stoned, phone boned,
alive and joined like lego
to a childlike mood
over me like a roar of joy.
My flesh was keen,
I was binge-thinking about the times they guffawed at my jokes,
I was falling in love with new music,
I was contemplating an affair with the Virgin Mary.
See, I'm a fire-soldier;
I like pretending that I'm the king of the room
In my head I take on the role of 'king'.
I went to the john didn't I.
I focussed and began lacquering the porcelain with my wis
and then I began drinking again in my room.
I imagined myself drinking the souls of those fermented plants.
I'm taking these vegetable souls with me, I thought.
Drunk and movement on the roof,
a special episode at the dunny.
I piss and concentrate on the glistening circle of light.
By now I've had about 10 standard drinks
and my blood is warm like my skin
when the thawing sun strikes it
as I leave the shade…
And later I come across all kinds of advice to myself,
desperately scribbled in journals:
'When you drink… when drunk,
you may drink with a drunken, heedless energy.
But when you're sober,
you regret drinking poison
with the energy of the ocean (a flower).'
Now, I'm listening intently to those beats there on the radio
and I feel around for a pen.
I love the leather feel of the pen in my jelly raw fingers,
so I write something, something very serious.
Note for tomorrow:
The rapport I have with drink
seems gentle and friendly for now,
like clag glue.
- FREE: 20 Poets anthology
- 93: PEACHSUBMIT to L Van, G Mouratidis, L Toong 92: NO THEME VIIICOMING SOON with 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
- Jennifer Mackenzie Reviews Elif Sezen’s A little book of unspoken history
- Introduction to Charmaine Papertalk Green’s Nganajungu Yagu
- Brigid Magner Reviews Michele Leggott’s Vanishing Points and Elizabeth Smither’s Night Horse
- Jack Kelly Reviews Liam Ferney’s Hot Take
- Submission to Cordite 93: PEACH
- Introduction to Cordite 91: MONSTER
- Poetry, Whatsoever: Blake, Blau DuPlessis, and an Expansive Definition of the Poem
- On Being Sanguine: Two Years of Panic and a Response to Terror in Christchurch
- A Deaf Rough Trade: Defending Poetry to ‘regular people’
- 12 Panels by Chris Gooch
- 5 Translated Yosuke Tanaka Poems
- A Buzz in the Retina: On Translating Luljeta Lleshanaku
- ‘That is some crafty bite’: Trisha Pender Interviews Melinda Bufton
- ‘You’re never disembodied from the action’: Dylan Frusher Interviews Judith Beveridge
- Excerpts from Neon Daze
- Chorography and Toute-eau in the Waters of Lower Murray Country
- 6 Poems from Robin M Eames
- Aussi / Or: Un Coup de dés and Mistranslation in the Antipodes
- Every other Friday
- I Still Love Without My Head
- Heath Ledger’s Joker
- Only fair
- small town lazarus
- from Red Black & Blues