Archive for August, 2021

Tuesday, 31 August 2021

Toppling by Indran Amirthanayagam

Give me your elbow. Take the Host in your hands;
but, Man, the Pope just spoke the sermon from
his living room, on video tape. This matter
is turning extreme. A taxi driver got infected
from his ride. Can we really shut down a city,
a region, the whole world? Be prepared
we are told. We were waiting for fire, a bomb,
icebergs breaking up; but this virus is more
insidious, a slow shaking and swaying
of the building in the mind before it falls.


Date: 2021

By: Indran Amirthanayagam (1960- )

Monday, 30 August 2021

Destiny by Natacha Féliz Franco

Love happens,
it is predestined.
The leaves’ green
sprouts in the city
Easter rabbits carry
happiness in their feet,
and in the exact triangle
two molecules meet,
love explodes.


Date: 2019 (original in Spanish); 2021 (translation in English)

By: Natacha Féliz Franco (19??- )

Translated by: Indran Amirthanayagam (1960- )

Sunday, 29 August 2021

The Navigators by Eleanor Margaret Bradstock

There are many seas, organ-pipe rocks.
Sometimes we drift for months, and wake
to the dog-watch of night,
on our lips the bitter taste of land.

Our anchored ship
perched on the ocean’s skin,
we hear the hull’s creak, keening
of the lines, fancy we hear voices
through the thunder of waves
knowing they’re the cries of sea-birds,
the boom and boom of breakers upon rock.

Cloudlands rise from the mist
saw-toothed peaks emptied into the sky
vanishing as we approach
the sun’s glare, a shifting sea
with nothing at its centre, the motion
of a rocking island.


Date: 2017

By: Eleanor Margaret Bradstock (1942- )

Saturday, 28 August 2021

All Those Ships That Never Sailed by Robert (Bob) Garnell Kaufman

All those ships that never sailed
The ones with their seacocks open
That were scuttled in their stalls…
Today I bring them back
Huge and transitory
And let them sail

All those flowers that you never grew-
that you wanted to grow
The ones that were plowed under
ground in the mud-
Today I bring them back
And let you grow them

All those wars and truces
Dancing down these years-
All in three flag swept days
Rejected meaning of God-

My body once covered with beauty
Is now a museum of betrayal.
This part remembered because of that one’s touch
This part remembered for that one’s kiss-
Today I bring it back
And let you live forever.

I breath a breathless I love you
And move you

Remove the snake from Moses’ arm…
And someday the Jewish queen will dance
Down the street with the dogs
And make every Jew
Her lover.


Date: 1973

By: Robert (Bob) Garnell Kaufman (1925-1986)

Friday, 27 August 2021

Time, Money and the Colour of the Sky by Joan Kerr

in the parking lot besides Swan Bay
the road workers
in their orange vests
are playing footy in their lunch hour
beside the yellow truck

dobbed and swizzled all across the Swan Bay sky
the almost white
to the grey of smudgy thumbprints
a slap of blue
as if the painter could not make up his mind
what sky should be

ground flows more easily

he’s got
the lightly furred effect on greenish shoals
the listening lean of stumps
a black and white boat
suckling at the pier

this drizzling day when sky
questions the certain colours of earth
I meet my friend the painter Kel
in Hesse St
Kel takes me to see his latest job
all friezes ceiling roses architraves
doors picked out
in five colours
different on each side of the door
Kel says
for a tricky job like this
it pays to use
a colour consultant


Date: 1999

By: Joan Kerr (1949- )

Thursday, 26 August 2021

Knossos by Helen Thurloe

If you asked me what I recall of the Minotaur’s labyrinth,
and the faded frescoes of rock-star bull-leapers, I would say:
it was my daughter’s blue and white checked dress,
which she pulled up all day, to inspect the band-aid on her knee;
and the fierce sun that we squinted past in every single photograph;
and the ginger stubble of the Ancient History teacher I ran away with
in the year after high school. But mostly I remember the stink
of cabbage from the neighbouring fields (sharp enough to kill Ulysses
and his legends, sufficient to repel Arthur Evans from his digs);
a miasma of stench, ripe as the stains on my canvas-bound Bury’s –
A History of Greece to the Death of Alexander the Great.


Date: 2020

By: Helen Thurloe (19??- )

Wednesday, 25 August 2021

Isaac by Amber Genevieve Flynn

it was gravity that broke our hearts
our rustic love felled soundlessly
by some brown man’s axe

We’d gone up to the woods in dark
my dress your boots
our cool ears and fingers
tasted there the moss and fog

But as the sun rose
our bodies broke and splintered
toppled to the leafy floor
perished with the crisper light of sunrise.

From: Flynn, Amber Genevieve, “Isaac” in Westerly, Volume 45, November 2000, p. 45.

Date: 2000

By: Amber Genevieve  Flynn (fl. 2000)

Tuesday, 24 August 2021

Island by Kristin Hannaford

Standing with this map, unfolded
open on the hot car bonnet,
silver fittings heat white with glare,
you try to place my finger on the map, to place
the heart along seams of paper
small creases, origamis of river
deltas and highways.
Thick conduit of traffic
beasting past
as hordes of buffalo
drum the terrain of passage,
the singular hum of motorcycle
countering overhead bypass.
You run the fingers of your hand
along the inner rim of shirt collar
wiping sweat or fatigue,
uncertain gestures, which
you adjust as sunglasses and side mirrors.
Upholstery of our seats burning
until you lean forward,
the wash of cooler air signalling
you know the way, it’s resolved.


Date: 2006

By: Kristin Hannaford (1972- )

Monday, 23 August 2021

Downsizing by Mardi May

Dad and I are at the local pub for the
Seniors Special Roast of the Day.

I wear a dress and Estee Lauder;
he wears turpentine and there’s a

button left over at the top of his shirt,
a smudge of blue across his brow

that might be a piece of fallen sky.
Today I watched him paint at home.

With three whiskies to ‘steady’ him,
he layered rocks you could climb,

texture weathered by palette knife;
a Namatjira gum stark against the

rich ochre tones of a rugged gorge.
My father paints too with his feet,

treading the fallen dobs of colour
into a Pro Hart canvas on the floor.

Now he paints from photographs,
travels the landscape of his mind,

but I have seen him measure
the land against his thumb;

shrink the vast horizon
to fit his lounge room walls.


Date: 2021

By: Mardi May (19??- )

Sunday, 22 August 2021

Monochrome by Sue Clennell

Dementia’s tweezers pluck her apricot memories,
pop Wordsworth’s daffodils like spilt beads.
X-rays expose the bullet holes
while medicos check for the calibre,
sift through the embers of a dying skull.
There is a little Halloween here,
white ants in the art deco,
you get the picture.
The dice falls like a guillotine.


Date: 2015

By: Sue Clennell (19??- )