Blank lyric

By | 1 February 2015

What does the street know?
both of its centuries
have disappeared
this was
a manufacturing warehouse
now a fitness gym
a cafe an imported
fancy european bike outlet
this was a corner shop

the police never come here
to this whatever,
who’d phone for them
no one burns a car round here
not for insurance not for fun
no one burns anything, no rage

eddie says you’d have to choose
audi soft top sports car?
4 wheel drive weed spreader?
‘police cars are always good’

we’re at 107 Projects
astrid’s artwork’s pinned up
white A4 sheets
prose paragraphs
against the grey wall

held by her line,
coinciding with mine
(written independently of hers)
‘The use value of a breakup
is thus the capacity
to steal and burn a car’
i.e. she concludes
a paragraph of prose
on avoiding
‘the pathology of heartbreak’
(astrid lorange)


things I never say to friends
whenever I talk to them
email takes
too much typing
to explain
anyway it’s all scroll or arrow
next message

what I meant was
I’d talk about today’s news
the picture of the boy
being tasered to death

who ever chooses
‘law & order’


austerity measures –
veiled ideologies
in untroubled countries


the ‘high’ alert upgrade
the ASIO guy introduces
on the eve of his retirement,
a gold watch grenade

(war on error
war on death cult
same same same
endless error)


decrepit mentors
who won’t retire
grooming acolytes
for true belief
charmed, flocking
to their transformation

others seem to survive
where everything
is ‘after baudelaire’
though actually
after him
is renée vivien

throwaway scraps
flashes & slips
notes on reverse sides
of receipts, envelopes,
paper tickets
in pencil or pen,
my method


for hours, I can sit
in a plastic chair
looking interested
for two & a half
at any meeting or event

life has brought me privacy
mental lurking
researching twenty-four-seven

in the background
dub incorporated
roots music I suppose
nothing to do
with this actual culture,
but available to me
& I am a white person


in a world
that really
has been turned
on its head
is a moment
of falsehood


It was autumn
osama bin laden
had just been
dropped into the ocean

we continued remembering
time was becoming
less & less

no one had heard of
the ebola river –
we used to call that place
‘warring zaire’
now the democratic republic
of the congo


some kind of concert
or documentary
shouting from the radio
sounds like conflict
a female complainant
‘a singer & a poet’

ending up
listed in a chapter –
The Invisible Women
of Australian Poetry
in mid-C21
a young lesbian’s
research project

in the nineteen seventies
a man could be
‘an honorary woman’
& attend
women’s liberation
collective meetings,


capital is one thing
life has not brought me
Catalyst Money,
not a bank,
a smartalternative
my account
is a dwindler
their emphasis on smart

money buys stuff
there’s probably
more stuff than people


the virus
is returning
to its source


The only things that are true
are exaggerations
the dreams do not dream

oodgeroo noonuccal
gave me back
the problem
long before
I knew she did


over forty years ago
kevin gilbert told us
‘white australia’
should leave
‘black australia’

he was right.

sounds positive
not irrefutable

those parts of the day
when you’re disconcerted


crawl in the flint
on abandoned
open-cut floors
eat dust cry sticky tears
break skin give up

to not be
what the implications
of any history make you
to not be
part of a white default
all you ever do
discontinues only
a skerrick
of its futile record


Outside the clinic
was our only hope’
says amanda
right into my ears
direct from the player
I already know
there’s no purpose,
there’s only life,
but she’s talking about
the 20th century
not about today
at the hospital,
experimental stammering
altered words aphasia
breath distorted confab
turning noise to sound,
a live vocal performance
(amanda stewart
‘matter in the mouth’)
broadcast on radio
last week

so, ‘incompleteness’

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