Creatrix 23 Poetry

December 2013

Selectors: Peter Jeffery OAM and Chris Palazzolo

Contributors:

Tash Adams

creative process
she’s designer

Kaye Brand

The Face for the Poet

Graeme Butler

Lines on Suddenly Coming Across a Jam Tree At the Foot of Bruce’s Rock.

Faye Teale – Clavi

MORNING

Sue Clennell

History repeats.
“The decapitated body of a female journalist was found in
_______ north-eastern  Mexico”

Gary Colombo De Piazzi

Deliberate Proposals of Attack
Where Did “Make Love, Not War” Go?

Frances Faith

ALCHEMY

Derek Fenton

ONCE WERE WARRIORS

Margaret Ferrell

BREAKING

Kevin Gillam

Skin

Fran Graham

Empty Nest
Tour de France

Mike Greenacre

Australian Gallery
Not To Know

Ann Harrison

Metamorphosis

Kenneth Hudson

THE MEANING OF LEAVES

Ross Jackson

CENTRELINER
DAGLISH- A MINIATURE

Deeksha Koul

letter to merwin

Alison Matthews

  When wishing isn’t enough…

Mardi May

PRIORITIES

Max Merkenschlager

GUM GHOST

Karen Murphy

You’re Slipping Away

Jan Napier

MORNING COMES

Allan Padgett

I Feel You Now
The Moon Escaped From Orbit

Chris Palazzolo

GEORGE ROMERO’S DAWN OF THE DEAD

Neil J Pattinson

Xenophobic Metaphor

Michael Pedrana

rake baslow & religion # 1
rake baslow & richard the knee-capper # 3

Kelly Pilgrim Byrne

Spiderlings

Caroline Sambridge

Rudolph joins the anorexics

Renee Pettitt-Schipp

Coming in the back door

Flora Smith

The ambush 

Lynne Talmont

Vale Varema

Gail Willems

THE WATCHER
SILENT ASSASSINS

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__________________________________________

creative process

I wake early
surviving on milk
and dry crackers

shuffle barefoot
to the bathroom
brush my teeth

retching
constrained
by convulsions

through watery eyes
I marvel how
the stomach congealed
my glass of milk
to curds and whey

scrunching eyes
yet when there is
no more to give
my body offers up a tear

one hand holds me
steady over sink
the back of the other
to wipe my mouth

in the beginning
I welcomed the nausea
meant my pregnancy
was taking
your little life strong

for nine months now
morning sickness
all day
and night

last night
the strangest dream
I met you
so perfect

like we’d always
known each other and yet
you had no face

something so wonderful
this miracle of creation
how your little life
so desperately wanted
could make me so sick

I remind myself to savour
my most creative endeavour

Tash Adams

 

 

she’s designer
_______ people make the clothes; clothes do
_______
not make a person – Zhang Nah

pull back the bamboo curtain
she holds scissors like shears
to the throat
of the mannequin

rips stitches
to remove an olive collar
hitches up a hem
frays a cuff

left over fabric for a belt
she sews late into the night
on grandmother’s machine

her lamp casts yellow light
through wafts of smoke
cigarette burning
in the ashtray

from the cushion
on her wrist
she plucks a pin
with her teeth
East no longer looks West
Fashion Week over
her up-cycled clothes sell
to help rural women

her designs stitch
a future to the past
she won’t forget where
she’s come from

red heart beats strong
she‘s designer
rainbows of ribbons
butterflies on strings

Tash Adams

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_______________________________

The Face for the Poet

It was a single capture.
A passing glance on my part
His face… his being reflected there.
He does not know this moment
For me reflects his future.
Enthusiasm etched uncontained
Pleasing is his pleasure.
He will live his life.
This man in buttercup yellow attire
Melding into the dining room
Replenishing lattes.
His gentleness of soul unmasked in a smile.

Kaye Brand

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_______________________________

Lines on Suddenly Coming Across a Jam Tree At the Foot of Bruce’s Rock.

Your soft yellow radiance
my whole world colouring.
What is integrity
that you should touch me so?
The quiet persistence
of your grey skin
haunts my soul with a burning desire
that I cannot fathom.
Having seen you here
I know I will always be
looking for you again
to feast my senses on something
I cannot attain
but which I need to know
is present in this world with me.

Graeme Butler

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_______________________________

MORNING
_______
(Sonnet)

Sun shimmers across roof tops hoping to stay
Leaves sway and wave as a breeze brushes by
Flowers lift their sleepy heads to smile away
Charcoal clouds hover, waiting to cry
Birds sing musicals across the courtyard
I relax with a coffee and some toast
As the postman delivers bills and cardsa
I admire the Jasmine climbing the post
Pillows of sand pushed up between cracks
Ants march back and forth as though on parade
The dog on the bench stretches on his back
The water fountain begins to cascade
Quiet comes to an end, as raindrops begin
Dog scampers, leaves float, ant’s hide under the bin

Faye Teale – Clavi

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_______________________________

History repeats.

You say that this is not the Egypt
you grew up in,
but pharaohs still topple
and crash in the dust.
Men still mount chariots,
worship the dead,
embalm them with flags.
Forget that their hearts
will be weighed against feathers.

Sue Clennell

Previously published by Speed Poets

“The decapitated body of a female journalist was found in north-eastern Mexico” _______ The West Australian.

Maria was thirty-nine,
the age of your daughter,
sister, wife.
Just doing her job reporting on
smack, horse, junk, skag, shit, brown
A-bomb, Billy, Blackbeauties, Black Tar,
Blow, Bluebirds, Charlie, China White, Coke.
Hearts are still cut out and held aloft
in Aztec Mexico.

Sue Clennell

Previously published by Speedpoets.

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_______________________________

Deliberate Proposals of Attack

The splendour of discordant blasts
from dark eyes strike through
puritanical, angel haired visions
held on moon beams.

Slash the melodious excuse
that never rises, submerged
by black clouds in blue eyes.

There is, was, could be
an argument to deliver
the finer expressions as eloquent
as Keats but the words are bound
by restraints unseverable.

And in the floundering clutch
at air, life reverts to the basest
mechanics of survival where defence
is a stronger response than aggression.

Where the opposite view
with its intended thrusts
quickly collapses to deliberate
proposals of surrender.

How the voice escalates
and the harmony deflates
with each parry until
only pieces remain.

Sometimes there is truce born
from the pain in each others eye,
a recognition of the presence
of more than this moment.
Where the past and future combined
hold more sway than this excerpt.

This eruption that is a vent
for something deeper,
something screaming for support
for recognition, despite its nameless face.
So the words stay bitten on the tongue
and the eyes plead for mercy
as the onslaught wavers.

Gary Colombo De Piazzi

Where Did “Make Love, Not War” Go?

Distant constellation growing bigger
under a 1960’s summer, pours the light
through the moon’s dark sieve.

A pre Aquarian embellishment
fighting for the right of free choice
free speech against the rattle of guns
and the corruption of a cold war.

How for the first time, the unconcerned
became concerned, found liberty
in rebelling against society’s constraints
and made love under an umbrella of flowers.

Chose the collective response
against autocratic rule and demanded
a voice to utopia.
How, half a century later
little has changed.

The poor are still poor
the disadvantaged still hunger
and guns still shatter the fabric of society.

Where have the dreamers, the movers,
the shakers gone? So much promise
so little result in a world where the few
manipulate, subjugate and devastate
the global economy and the many suffer
through ineffectual incompetence.
Struggle to maintain a semblance of dignity
as purpose and reward are wiped away.

How refugee and asylum seeker
become synonyms for thief and intruder
in a country struggling to cope with change.
Where the population is force-fed
contrived “reality” TV and party drugs
are the choice of the young.

Generations stepping towards self-destruct
and no one sees the timer counting down
as constellations slowly fade
in the atmospheric haze.

Gary Colombo De Piazzi

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_______________________________

ALCHEMY

After we make love
we are like the ground after rain
heavy and sodden with the sighs we spent
and fertile with new love for the universe
the moss between my thighs
glows with strange steam
as though there might come forth suddenly
a magic to create worlds

After we make love
all sounds are heard anew
our ears open to notice the city again
and the noises outside of our loft
tap timidly
grumbling in a distant reality
asking for permission to exist

When your flesh and mine
touch and make the rain
your hands orchestrate the movements
of our synergy
eclectic, generous
my fingers conduct the alchemy
that makes our barometer spin
We make new elements
and confound the hourglass

After we make love
a little time must pass
while we untangle the strands
of your mind and mine
We gather strength
to walk upon the new world we have made
beginning again
on ground soaked by our rain

Frances Faith

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_______________________________ 

ONCE WERE WARRIORS

Lying dormant under layers of clay,
terracotta warriors lie in wait,
tenaciously, for that triumphant day.
They lie dormant under layers of clay
until they can fulfill their fiscal fate
fiercely fleecing fortunes from tourists pay-
they lie no more under layers of clay:
terracotta warriors sold at the gate!

Derek Fenton

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_______________________________

BREAKING 

Village Boy broke today.  Slipping
from my fingers he lay chopped
off at the knees.
Took me back to that birthday
when I handed him over.  Your
smile widened as he joined
the row of Hümmel children
parading the mantel.

Reminds me too of the other
break when you and I
fell apart, our shared tears
fracturing silence –
rupture too wide to fix;
little time as the clock ticked.

Village Boy now stands at
the back of the shelf – he
came together again.
The fault line won’t be noticed,
not now by you, nor by anyone.
But I’ll always know it’s there.

Margaret Ferrell

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_______________________________

Skin 

you walk the land that first breathed
and flamed you.  there’s space, as if
God got bored, stopped, left the rest
to mind’s eye.  scrub lies low, in
sulk, on the scrim, hills. a hawk
loops, spins sky, drops, dives through you,
sews you back to ache and need.

you talk to clouds, sing the wind,
on your back, hours spent with weeds,
slow seep of damp.  then called, home,
to dine on hush and bleed and
grief.  hands froze then, on the wheel
that stole.  ‘you won’t leave’.  you don’t
stay.  you take the first that lands

Kevin Gillam

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_______________________________

Empty Nest 

I’m discovering miracles in the mundane.
In good weather I’m euphoric
parked at the beach
with a coffee and the newspaper
contentment warming me like wine.

I’ve subscribed to some new ethos
lit up on a different plane
like sleepwalking through
a new and seamless landscape
the moon and stars in the same place
but more familiar.

There’s even a fresh aroma.
I inhale this sweet penance
savour it like bread
fresh from the oven
and store it away airtight
to preserve my absolution.

Floodlit in morning sun
and dressed in awe
I accept the award
and bow graciously,
filthy rich
as the newest
no ties laureate.

Fran Graham

Tour de France

The peloton, a multi-coloured ribbon,
surges across the landscape,
riders’ concentration set
hard as their saddles,
their movement,
fluid as a fish’s tail.
Country coded,
muscle primed and flying,
they transform their fatigue
into ripped determination.
It propels them
across soft velvet folds
of meadow and hillside,
a swaying paintbox.
Occasionally a spill
disfigures the canvas
but mechanically they reform
and flow on like textile,
a sarong wrapping the road,
a pulsating tapestry.
Then holes appear
and the fabric begins to unravel
in the sprint for the line
where heads lift
and pumped fists telegraph victory.

Fran Graham

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_______________________________

Australian Gallery

Set apart as the
distinctions of cultural
landscape we
cannot move without
the aura and
charm of lifestyle
following us from
town to face.

Streeton’s Golden Summer –
outback sheep and
scorching sun glaze
observes a greater
silence within,
contentment
of sheep beying
through the wind,
the rustle of ears

to sudden crowds
and bar-room
jeers the music of
Roberts, the more
refined with parasole
and petticoats
raising ankles and
finding another brow.

Movement of landscape –
places we all know
and interpret
swing in canvas colour
and hanging lights
to stairs – levels
we cannot escape.

A product of local lives,
of a hundred years –
artistic and philosophic
sweat that pours
through the character
of sun, surf and
outback identities
from Streeton,
Roberts, McCubbin and
Condor who led
the Heidelberg dance.

The pain and pride
of voices echo
through our distant
halls of industry
as a physical world
shaping
the mirror in us all.

Mike Greenacre

Not To Know 

Today wasn’t a normal day
to find Zoe out after dusk
and even when called
for her to hiss and arch away
as a lioness defending her lair.

Not feeling like the chase and stealth
needed to manoeuvre her inside,
I let her go with the shadows
not realising in half an hour this
Burmese child would return no more.

Looking at you, frozen on bitumen
as if time had momentarily stilled,
you seem larger, with fur shock-
teased, your gaze unchanging
looking further on, past now.

You were a wanderer, just like
the Oriental Siamese, known by
strangers blocks away and the big
black and white cat wandering curiously
past the back glass laundry door.

Telling our children was hardest:
Jaime and her spontaneous waterfall
of tears   and Jonathan, the older
holding his back, shouting: ‘She wasn’t
even a year old!’ his tears wouldn’t let go.

In some ways I’m prepared for
your death, having rehearsed
the loss when you once disappeared,
‘not knowing’ imbuing a stronger hope
that suddenly burst through the door.

As I look at you, snug in your bed
by the camellias, I turn and curl your
body evenly with the shovel, as if
moulding a pot in clay, echoing your
despair: ‘I came running when you called’ …

And I still hear you, scratching, climbing
on the back flywire, absorb your
rich purring memory in early dawn,
watching the black and white cat wander
hopefully, past the glass laundry door.

Mike Greenacre

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_______________________________

Metamorphosis

Your clothes strewn
they echo a sad note,
abandoned
no ownership
you have gone.

It’s raining now
the window cries.
I peer between the tears,
some run down
some splatter
but they all fall.

I’m alone
nothing
silence,
my heart beats
but just.

Do you feel….
alone as I do?
or
are you buying new clothes!

Ann Harrison

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_______________________________ 

THE MEANING OF LEAVES 

This dry brown leaf curled on the ground
lies              still.             Makes no sound.
Has no more meaning than me
______________or the tree from which it fell.

___________________________________ In tiny distant corners of the Universe
galaxies collide
_____________________ stars are born and die.
All things fall from some tree
unknowable to you and me.
Leaves upon the ground
outnumber people round the world
_____________________ since Time began.
___________________________________ What does that mean ?

Something we can never answer
______________ even in our dreams.
Perhaps there’s a Plan we cannot know.
In it we come and change things
for the worse and then we go.

Kenneth Hudson

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_______________________________

CENTRELINER

Reflection at the cross
of short steel bridge
and drainage canal

white gums dead asleep
under streaming
sheets of emerald

and my face midstream
steady trout in pouring current
banks of acid green

for me snake grass
at the edges
too much risk, too extreme.

Ross Jackson

DAGLISH- A MINIATURE 

Wedge of suburb served on a cake slice,
delicate petit fours, a place
where crows only call in visiting
hours. Legoland club tennis,
for older folk, only
two games at a time.

Station bound students leave
parkland flats, follow
the mellow garden wall
of railway on Stubbs Terrace
and bursting from the other side,
the golden flowerhead of Subiaco.

Ross Jackson

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_______________________________

letter to merwin 

surely I know this becoming
the vase is already shattered
why am I always so surprised
it is written on everything
bells that toll along the river
sighing grief of this rain
air wet and your skin warm
in the deepening evening
oil burning in our lamp
your eyes
the smoke and the shore
it is written on everything
how many times I have emptied the ashtray
in worn silence following drowsy goodbyes
my pale reflection in the long mirror
we were talking while the flowers slept
surely I know this becoming
the vase is already shattered
why am I always so surprised

Deeksha Koul

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_______________________________

When wishing isn’t enough…

When do you finally decide that enough is enough…

When do you finally say “I can do this no more”…

When do you finally walk away…

…taking with you the last remnants of self…

closing within your heart
that part of your life…

dreams left floating in the words of

maybe

perhaps

one day

for you know deep within
that no amount of wishing
will ever make it so…

switch off the light
close the door

never look back

Alison Matthews

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_______________________________

PRIORITIES

At Maylands station,
brisk along the platform,
she boards a train to Perth.

In a crowded carriage
twittering with schoolgirls,
she takes the Priority Seat.

A sudden shrinking into
these upholstered words
implying some infirmity.

This diminishment
an instant branding
of capacity and age.

From any other seat
she would see much
further down the track.

Some travelers would note
her slump and graying hair,
the lack of a smart phone;

agree with her classification
and resume their texting
to other networks.

Mardi May

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_______________________________

GUM GHOST

Swishhhh …. and I stopped;
a swing of Reaper’s scythe and I lay cropped.
As every life before and life to come,
my journey to the present had begun.

Condensing space
and countless time proceeded to erase
that universe which spawned humanity;
molecular arrangement on a spree.

Matter’s retreat
to antimatter finally complete,
rebuilding into molecules began;
atomic debris swirled in random plan.

Somehow, a spark
of what I’d been regrouped within the dark
and traces of the human that was me
now whisper in this eucalyptus tree.

Max Merkenschlager

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_______________________________

You’re Slipping Away

You message less often,
say you don’t have time
for me,
but you have time
to take pictures
of the boy in the sheep onsie,
his hands clenched by his side
and the updates
about
the people you love,
non of the tags
leading back to me,
the road cut into
the wires on our computers

like the path etched into
the earth by the rivers,
like stone tablets
that survive buried
for thousands of years,

these wire friendships
cut right through me,
leaving me at my laptop
unconnected.

Karen Murphy

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_______________________________

MORNING COMES

Morning comes:
light sliced thin and sharp as lemons
crusted with morphine dreams
tendrils of dark spiked
on shooshed asides.
Morning comes:
nurses   cold white shells
washed by youth and all unknowing
injections a pale glass sea.
Morning comes:
cold tea wafts
floaty as anaesthesia
defleshes the phobia of confusion.
Morning comes:
flickery as old films
relentless as hope
wreaths fade out in shades
of Plutonian repeats.

Jan Napier

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_______________________________

I Feel You Now

I feel your pulse
inside me as you love me
deeply

I feel your heart
beside me,
valving in waves of luscious force

I feel the pain of your long
term hurt above you, mewling

I taste the acid of your new
found courage at
your tongue’s
wet tip

I absorb your life’s tension
as it slowly dilates
I touch a trace of
history’sjarring darkness

I see a bright
new light shining

I feel your pulse
inside me, moving

I entwine myself
gently with you

You smile, and
shuffle sideways into
love’snew curve.

Allan Padgett

The Moon Escaped From Orbit

a cold mist settled over my hung
world last night, in the midst of glee it|
took me by the throat and shook my
verbs from adjacent tangled consonants, it took

my analysis of night transiting to an insipid caustic day to
new worlds of gravitas, tugging hard at
my residual reason, pulling tight the bitter ropes that
entangled my charcoal mood, singing
my remaining courage and turning it to dust

and in the remnant, leftover universe a lone owl cried
with fear as its tears ran hard to
forge a flood, and

then the moon escaped from orbit and fell to my share of
a cold hard razor-edged earth, and I
cried with accelerating anxiety

when the edges of my mood collapsed under
their own weight, and it was night again, cold and
dark and hardening amber, preserving for all time the

sense of abandonment, the knowing loss, the

sorrowful emptiness and

the fatal goodbyes

Allan Padgett

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_______________________________

GEORGE ROMERO’S DAWN OF THE DEAD
_______ For Jenn Godfrey

After a gutsful of bikies’ guts the zombies
spread out, temporarily replete, and form
surprisingly orderly lines across
the shopping centre concourse like a parade
of moronic flaneurs. This is not order:
what keeps those arms and legs cybernetic,
what stops that putrid meat from falling
off the bones, resides in the voodoo box
of the director’s mind; but those rows
of shambling carcasses are ripples
of inertia closing over the shivering
specks of terrestrial life until
the cosmic reign of the inanimate is restored.

Chris Palazzolo

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_______________________________

Xenophobic Metaphor

There’z No Point Denying it
(the un trust)
We Exist
The Un-Educated Types, the Un-Learned, the Un-Schooled,
the Un-Curriculumed
the Un-Disciplined
A Tier that Exists.

As our classless, Fair Go, Denial Society
tries to Clamber onto a Life Ring of Truthfulness,
as the wretched craft of Blame Shifting Gurgles
beneath the surface…

We have a Role to play in this Mosaic of Capitalism
“We all Exist in”
Dis-Inglorious as it maybe
We Have a place, Albeit Menial
Most times we prevail with a Patina of Gladness.

Neil J Pattinson

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_______________________________ 

rake baslow & religion # 1

god,
after creating a universe

but forgetting
to create

his sons fate,
was  angered in powerlessness
______________      at the
cruel death of  his son
_____________________     jesus.

after long days
___ of disbelief

god turned his anger
towards the
large sharp  nails

responsible for his sons
_____________________ tortured state;
burred
in agony
outside a  slow death.

god bellowed
from the frailty of
his kingdom.

‘from this day forth, all nails designed
_ for crucifixion are forever banished
from the realm of existence’.

as soon had he ended this sovereign ruling

all crucifixion nails

vanished.

______________ unbeknown by him and his design,
they all soon
_______ slowly returned.

only this time;

calling themselves ,
____________________________  poets.

Michael Pedrana

rake baslow & richard the knee-capper # 3

for xmas
st nick gave him a
bottle of pills with a bottle of rum
after a dear john letter
took him to appetite from
inside the new silence
_____________________  of his children less

cold house.
All except
some scattered toys
and
smashed picture frames
splashed on fresh dusty floors
where furniture once shaped and now
smudged from the rush
of  medics footprints,

but still and
empty like an echo.

he doesn’t talk about it,

tough men don’t.

he presses for a nurse,
the drips needle sits uncomfortable inside him.
he eyes down her uniform when she stoops over to assist
and winks to me gingerly,

wrinkles map
his prison-
scarred face.

i scruff his prickly
lumpy head
and call him a stupid bastard.

But there is no lecture,
The thickness of bricks cannot absorb sympathies whisper.

The nurse bottoms away
And he instructs me to whip out
the amphetamines he had me collect from
the booby-trap of  a secret location.

He  rolls a borrowed twenty note
And snorts a line on
tomorrows
bland menu,

Swallowing it in
and sculpturing an
Invincible shape that colours the dim of his eyes
and

Shaking his scattered dented head from electric delirium,
He props up and
asks me to help him write
a letter to his 5 year old daughter.

awkwardly blurting
he cannot
read or write.

but tell any one

___________________________________ and he’ll kill me.

Michael Pedrana

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_______________________________

Spiderlings

A decent upwind
flings them, silk trailing
like a glistening anchor.
The exhilaration of not knowing
where the ride will end,
their bodies catapulted into perfect blue
and the silence
as they surf invisible waves.
If and where they land is inconsequential
tomorrow doesn’t matter.

Kelly Pilgrim Byrne

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_______________________________

Rudolph joins the anorexics

Rudolph got a shock one day
when Santa told him to go away.
“Rudolph I’ve got this to say,
you’re too fat to pull my sleigh.”

Rudolph decided to take the hint,
he didn’t have much cash – he was skint.
Rudolph dined on Special K
and went to Jenny Craig every day.

He decided not to have much to eat,
bread and water was a special treat.
Rudolph became a health fanatic,
lettuce and carrots did the trick.

His hero became a Barbie doll,
he was losing kilos – he was on a roll.
Rudolph became as thin as a stick
and posed as cameras went click, click, click.

When Santa saw Rudolph he gave a yell.
My chicken soup will really help.
Santa’s help came way too late,
Rudolph succumbed to a terrible fate.

Santa wished he’d shut his mouth
when Rudolph was buried way down south.
Let’s drink up and make a toast
to Rudolph’s anorexic ghost.

Caroline Sambridge

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_______________________________

Coming in the back door

like you could wait politely at the front one.
Coming in the back door
like survival was a party, you’re just not invited.
But in all this
facelessness
we are blind
to the coming from;
coming from a landscape in shadow
where rape is tactical, procedural, political,
hold the daughter still
plant your flag in that dark place,
force the life out of her eyes until she
is pregnant with the violence of it.
Let despair grow round
and firm and hungry.
We say; the welcome mat,
red carpet, flood gates open
when all you see is light
from darkness
a door
ajar

Renee Pettitt-Schipp

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_______________________________

The ambush 

On a morning ordinary as any other

when Corellas in flight through river gums
tore a shriek of white noise from the sky

and bushrangers chased by troopers
wore the same gaudy colours on the bus shelter,

from the car radio came a singer and a song
_______ Yes, it’s all coming back to me…
______________ all coming back to me now…
 

making me swing onto the verge, half-doubled over
from a huge punch of pain, a visceral hit.

A passer-by might have seen a woman sobbing,
rocking back and forth in her car  –  holding herself tight  –
a woman who had not grieved enough for a lover.

 _______ When you hold me like that….
______________ and you touch me like this…

She still wanted the smell of his skin
_______ and his moving inside her, wanted the walk home
______________ on roads trembling silver under the moon,
joy and guilt jumbled and stumbling beside her.

She wanted that blind, stumbling joy.

Flora Smith

 The lyrics quoted are from ‘It’s All Coming Back to me Now’, written by Jim Steinman and sung by Celine Dion

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Vale Varema

After sparkly trainers and fashions on the field
After parties and barons and bare feet exposed
After dreams come true and head pieces askew
After all that, an equine, doing his best, breaks  down
so they say
Truth is he breaks a leg poor thing and for some reason has to pass

To all the winners, congratulations
And for the rest, losers like most of us, well its only one day a year, so, so what?
It’s the day we stop and gape at all the equine flesh on display
Forgetting, most of us about the one who breaks down and has to pass
Number 21

Lynne Talmont

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THE WATCHER

on a back road all wrinkles and patches
sliding eyes fall over an eagle
motionless in the roadside dust
the ‘caught in amber’ twist
of fox stealing sideways
watching me
watching it
eagle watches both
from sliding eyes
wrinkled patched anchored
in a sheet by lines of pain
your sliding eyes
twist amber
lights on a bedside monitor
watching you

Gail Willems

SILENT ASSASSINS

She’s changed
tension ties fine wires on her face
rogue cells play with electro sensors
bond with grains of shifting sands
around once lovely bones
fat fireflies on crack microbes jockey for space
in the rivers of blood her ravenous brain searches through
the daily circuits a whirling galaxy of coloured pills
stashed in cupboards and drawers
cancer makes rules outside the law
assassins that enjoy the hunt enjoy the kill
the rasp of sand along the bones
burls of skin and flesh flake off
in the wheezing steam of the black hole
last chance a mutated cell
careens its way in cycles of scream and laughter
relax and die be reborn in space freed up
on the thin edge of rust and bone
as time draws breath in the blood

Gail Willems

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