Creatrix 2 Poetry

 

September 2008

 

Poets in this issue:

Annamaria Weldon

Paper, ink, inkstone, brushes

Flora Smith

Kusadasai

Louise Evans

So You Think You Can Dance?

Jenny de Garis

Yellow

L. M. Blackshaw

Freckles

Life Dance

Femi Adedina

the rock and the waves (ii)

Paula Jones

Mt Fuji

Joyce Parkes

Moving Along the Mitchell Freeway

Brian Langley

Moore River Blues

Caroline Sambridge

“I can’t be bothered”

 

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Paper, ink, inkstone, brushes
The four precious things of a library (Traditional Chinese).

 

There’s the forest, like an inkstone
hunkered as memory
shouldering cobalt skies

 

streaked with white brush-strokes
sloping to headlands of lampblack
at rest on a parchment sea.

 

On the horizon, veranda’s edge
end of my desk, in the page margins
landscape waits expectantly …

 

elements insisting I write, patient
as four precious things of a library.

 

Has nobody told them, then
how archives of words were effaced
all the books burnt at your wake …

 

On the cusp of thought
in folds of hill, at the limn of sight
something remains, attends my first line.

 

Reminded of calligraphers who mill
difficult silence for dark grains
I lift the inkstone’s weight, begin again.

 

 Annamaria Weldon

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Kusadasai

 

If ever I come back to Kusadasai
I would not return to that small stone house,
the one they say was built for Mary.
I would not light a candle, shuffle past
hushed and half-believing, or kneel down
on cool worn stone and say a prayer.

 

I’d climb instead the hills behind,
climb past morning’s ringing goatbells.
I’d sit in warm sun among red poppies,
gold and white daisies, purple runners
and the yellowing heads of wild aniseed.
I’d look over blue valleys to the far sea,
to ancient Ephesus in her ruined grace
and pray to all the gods of that place.

 

Flora Smith

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So You Think You Can Dance?

 

Young Teddy went to Dancing School to solve his great dilemma ~
he wanted to increase his odds of going out with Emma.
Now, Ted was not a handsome boy, with ears like handlebars,
and a mouth crammed full of jutting teeth made it hard to say his ‘R’s.

 

They sounded more like ‘W’s: ‘Recruit’ became ‘wecwoot’
so instead of risking ridicule, poor Ted stayed mostly mute.
The dancing classes went quite well until one Friday night,
when suddenly his teacher said, “Now, who will you invite?

 

“It’s time to get a partner, Ted. You can’t dance on your own.
It’s time to ask that special girl ~ is there someone you can phone?”
Poor Ted went scarlet in the face, and broke out in a sweat…
He knew with sinking heart that this was something he’d regret.

 

The day then dawned to make that call, and Ted was in a spin.
He dialled with shaking fingers and his voice came out all thin…
“Uh, hullo Emma, this is Ted ~ you know ~ fwom English Lit?
And Maths and Twigonometwy and Fwench with Mrs Pitt?”

 

“…It’s who?” asked Emma testily, not trying very hard
to place his voice, or classes, for he had caught her quite off-guard.
He stammered more inanities, then grabbed his only chance ~
he cast around to find a way to ask her out to dance.

 

“I need a fwiend to pwactice with, evewy Fwiday night
at Wosie’s Dance Academy… I…I thought you’d do alwight.”
Now Emma was not a kindly girl; charity not her style,
but mischief making was such fun… she smiled a wicked smile.

 

“Why, Ted,” said she, “How nice you are to ask me out with you.”
Though who this silly caller was, she didn’t have a clue.
Come Friday, Ted dressed smartly for his very special date.
He hurried through his supper for he didn’t dare be late.

 

He walked around to Emma’s house,  a posy in his hand,
I’m sure she’ll be impwessed with Wosie’s Wacy Wagtime Band!”
…The shock was hard to swallow when she opened up the door ~
Ted’s face went red, then scarlet when he saw what Emma wore:

 

Her hair was spiked and gaudy in a range of rainbow hues,
and on her feet she sported two big clunky platform shoes.
“Let’s go, then, shall we?” Emma said and gave a cheeky pout,
and Ted was treated to the sight of two front teeth blacked out.

 

Not wanting to be daunted, our young Teddy saw his chance
to prove he was a ‘somebody’, and show that he could dance.
That night he danced the Tango, and the Foxtrot and the Waltz,
Then he danced a nifty Quickstep with exhilarating schmaltz.

 

He danced the mighty Mambo, then the Rumba with aplomb,
And Emma felt as though it was her first night at the prom.
Her feet, they barely touched the floor the whole entire night,
regardless of the fact that they were not exactly light.

 

And by the time he took her home, young Teddy was on fire,
and Emma couldn’t help herself ~ she truly did admire
the way he hit that dance floor, and how he moved his feet…
and underneath his shyness…well…he was really rather sweet.

 

Louise Evans

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Yellow

Imagine inventing yellow or moving
For the first time in a cherry curve
 – M.C.Richards

 

I’ve enjoyed the country in winter
++++++++++++++  till this year
twigs clawing clouds are a soreness,
++++++++++++++  the shouting gales
weeklong winds
++++++++++++++  wearing me down.

 

Forgetting tongue-cleaving summer
++++++++++++++  I thirst for the sun,
for uncoiling rainbows, lush paddocks;  wish
++++++++++++++  mists could be spun
like bundles of wool to fine thread;  I could see
++++++++++++++  the winter creek sing.
I think I am Jonah — swallowed by grey.

 

Drive back to the suburbs for comfort.
Dark roads are running like rivers.
The sea is gobbling the dunes.
The house is empty and cold.

 

My daughter brings Robin.  He takes
++++++++++++++  my hand, leads me
in search of the toys.  I throw bricks in cartons
++++++++++++++  according to colour.
He joins me, and giggles.
++++++++++++++  He is suddenly pointing,
mouths quite distinctly,  BLUE.

 

Yes, I say, BLUE.  The sky is that, too.
++++++++++++++  Let’s go for a walk;
there’s a break in the rain.
++++++++++++++ 
I want to hear him say it again.
Hopeful, I point to the bright trouser patch,
++++++++++++++  BLUE, I suggest.
He tilts his head back — and grins.

 

++++++++++++++  Smiling, we walk.
At the end of the street the playground is waiting
++++++++++++++  seesaw and swings above sea.
And then he is pointing.
++++++++++++++  In someone’s small garden
the rain has encouraged a wattle.
++++++++++++++  His mouth opens, shaping
— LELLOW.
++++++++++++++  Yes, yes,
I say, YELLOW.
And savour the taste of the sun.

 

Jenny de Garis

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Freckles

 

Angel kisses, Mother said
she tried to put
a good slant on them.

 

But, I know better

Some manic angels
played a demonic game
of dot-to-dot.

 

Court jesters
in a celestial theatre
created comic entertainment.

 

Coloured face
dots joined
into a big brown splotch.

 

Ha ha very funny
Bah! Angel kisses.

 

I know better.

 
L. M. Blackshaw
 

 

Life Dance

 

steps and movement
define the dance
as music plays
sometimes fast
sometimes slow
haunted melodies
fluid motion
quick quick slow
from side to side
one step two step
tap tap tap
music shows the
way to go.

 
L. M. Blackshaw

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the rock and the waves (ii)

 

the waves
are fluid,
free and unfettered
changing, recycling and
ever moving.

the rock is fixed
unmoved and solid
it’s bought into position
and left ‘unremoved’
unless shifted or blasted
a support and a pillar
but…
the waves are more
powerful
they carry solids,
weighty objects
they move
corners and crevices
they navigate

waves are waves
innocuous, humble and
unassuming
but
powerful, encompassing
and soothing
the rock is solid

but
what did the CREATOR
used mostly
in creating the world?
WATER of course
‘cos ‘tis free, unfettered
and untied.

Femi Adedina

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Mt Fuji

 

In a small tatami room
Two floors above Shinjuku
We shut out the rush
Softly slide the shoji screen
Careful not to rip the paperskin
By the halo of a single candle
Within the twist of sandalwood
A futon stretched out on the floor
A red silk landscape
Underneath you are the rolling earth
Above I am the parasol sky
In the lap of our creation
Mt Fuji rises
From a ruffled bed sheet
Like a mighty mountain
Newly forged

 

Paula Jones

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Moving Along the Mitchell Freeway
(I. m. F. S. F.)

 

If there are always two exceptions
to an absolute what then are the
two exceptions to always and is one

 

dweller’s I of lesser concern than
that of fifty other eyes? If ad interim’s
answer is yes who would want to

 

acquiesce, don the hero’s hat?
So the next question to be met is
could there be a hero without a

 

tragedy — if not, is the hero’s
companion called Proxy, Petrified,
Prosperity, Porphyry — is stifling

 

a question a scoop, a scourge or
sequencing semicolons in a soli-
loquy? Moving along the Mitchell

 

Freeway was noticing the steel of
a driver who steers calamity into
another commuter’s lane.

 

Joyce Parkes

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Moore River Blues

 

1993

In a quiet little village, about an hour north of Perth,
I’ve got a modest cottage on my special bit of earth.
I look out on the ocean, and the river flowing near,
And know I’m very lucky, that I am living here.
For I watch perpetual motion, in the river and the sea.
In the colours and the texture: They set my spirit free
At dawn and in the evening, I hear the magpies trill,
And the kookaburras laughing, by the shop up on the hill
And high up in the tree tops, on every branch and fork
I watch the antics of the birds, as they squabble, chatter, squawk.
And ‘neath the trees, the silver-eyes and wrens are quietly drawn
To flutter in the rainbows of the sprinkler on my lawn.
On many mornings, early, when the breeze blows easterly,
I stand knee deep in water casting bait into the sea
I’m often times rewarded, with tailor, herring, whiting.
But the joy is in the sunrise. (It’s a bonus if they’re biting)
Some days when it’s a trifle cool and the morning air is chilly.
I chase a little golf ball on fairways green and hilly.
My handicap! Now what is that? I neither know nor care.
For the pleasure’s not in counting, but just in being there.
For in the spring, the heath lands come alive with vivid hues
Of wildflowers in every shade of yellows, reds and blues.
You ask, why is it special? The reason’s plain to see
I can forget the city’s rush, and commune with earth and sea

 

…ooo…

 

1996

But paradise is threatened by the city’s urban spread.
Instead of trees and sandhills, there’ll be rooftops there instead.
For the far side of the river, where our children used to play
And families have their picnics on a windy summer’s day.
Where the water birds go wading and the eagles soar above
This special place of nature, the place that many love.
The place that makes a poet out of any common bloke
Is set to be “developed”. I don’t find it a joke.
For the plan has now been published, its down in black and white,
Houses almost to the river, a very different sight.
And room to put a shopping mall, a library and a school.
Will the company put them in there? If you think that, you’re a fool.
For the dollar signs are gleaming in the visions of the few
Who would turn this piece of nature into an urban zoo
With cars, manure and garden sprays, each do their little part
To kill the fragile river, to cut it to the heart.
To poison all the fishes, and the birds along the edge
and the creatures that inhabit each little rocky ledge.
So years from now, I see it clear, a narrow dirty creek
meanders through the suburbs, and I hear the people speak.
“Wouldn’t it be lovely had our forebears got it right”
“If they’d left a piece of nature. If they’d only had the sight
To slow the city’s growing spread, to curb its northern push
And left us with a river and a bit of natural bush.”
But I’m too much of a cynic, I know our planners well,
Persuaded by the dollar, on a one-way trip to hell.
For hell to me is where I’ll be when my spirit doesn’t soar.
When there is no longer beauty when I look out of my door.
Where the colour of the river is an algae kind of green
And the parrots and the silver eyes and wrens are rarely seen
And the heath land where the flowers grew becomes a shopping mall
Surrounded by a car park with room for one and all
But for one thing I am hopeful, it’s not happened overnight
And maybe; – just a maybe; there’s still time to get it right.
…ooo…

 

2006
Now years on down life’s highway, a light shines clear and bright,
The South Side River Urban Plan, has almost gone from sight.
For after near on ten long years of plans that came and went
And bleatings from the company regarding money spent.
The government has had its say, there’ll be no urban zoo;
The land will stay much as it was, and the river, it will too.
And the voices of the people, who cried out in protest long
Can be heard along the river as they sing in joyous song.
And this little piece of paradise, where the river meets the sea
Will stay a place to be enjoyed by the likes of you and me.

 

Brian Langley

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 “I can’t be bothered”

 

I can’t be bothered to make my bed.
I just want somewhere to lay my head.
I can’t be bothered to cook my tea.
MacDonalds is the place to be.
I can’t be bothered to sit and weed.
I’ll let them grow and turn to seed.
I can’t be bothered to mow the lawn.
The grass is looking rather forlorn.
I’m rather lazy, I must confess.
The place is becoming a giant mess.
Everything is covered in dust.
and the cheese grater has turned to rust.
I can’t be bothered to do the dishes.
Genie- will you grant me 300 wishes?
Your every wish is my command.
I’m here to lend you a help[ing hand.
But think carefully before you make a wish,
or you’ll be seafood for the fish.

 

Caroline Sambridge

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