No water here where dust is thick
and even patented. Her lepidopterist’s
eyes quivering behind brambles of jewelry
like an aphrodisiac for the terminally
numb. She listens to the whimpers
of broken-necked birds and thinks
of Latin names pinned to specimen boards.
A horripilation of moths drink
the dried saliva from her lips;
her face the pallor of the drowned.
No pencilled message and no subtext.
Too stingy even to buy a stamp. Here
we have an accurate depiction
of weariness, the solid memory of cushions.
You hang on those salted beachside walls,
fading in all seasons’ weather, hovering
over the mute phone at the top of the stairs.
Your crossed eyes the only thing
retaining any colour, other than a bruised
suggestion at your throat. The pursed lips
like the diagonal strike of a pawn
within the circumference of your face.
But it is the eyes which bind,
always at the pinnacle, beyond
the reach of water, whom everybody hated
that lived there, their red intensity lost.
On my blind side, unnoticed, they have blended
chameleon-like into subsequent walls
At last the surface of water
is manifest, though it could be the sky.
Unseen mosquito larvae frenetic
in the shade of a bridge. Punctured
membranes of publicised dreams
litter the stillness and eventual peace.
A floating spider poised on the lake’s
meniscus. Reflections of willows
conjure quiet violence, mud settling
on the bottom, a school-bag filled
with stones, the ripples dissipating
after a swamp-hen has shrieked across
the dinner plates of water lilies
clattering into the reeds
- 97: PROPAGANDASUBMIT NOW with M Breeze and S Groth 96: NO THEME IXwith M Gill & J Thayil 95: EARTHwith M Takolander 94: BAYTwith Z Hashem Beck 93: PEACHwith 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