Posts tagged ‘2013’

Saturday, 16 October 2021

Hair Treatment by Nia Mendy

Inspired by Grimms’ Snow White and Disney’s Princess and the Frog

For the first few months, Snow White tries
to finger comb. Prince Charming whines
as she straightens strands after each shower,
goading her with his drawer of scissors.
Yet he spends hours cutting and moussing,

his hair so slick that his hands convert to an oil spill.
He peeks at the mirror for enchantment, but it never
speaks and leaves him to consult Snow about his fairness.
Snow wants to reduce the glass to shards. When he calls
his bride’s hands future sledgehammers, she doesn’t flinch
and jerks his tresses till he begs. Sometimes Charming chases
her around the castle, shears buzzing alive in his fist.

Who understands the blink of fainting, how the forest
tapers to swimming green, then spins to black?

Easily Tiana, swooning as her mother weaved perm into her
strands, the chemicals cooking her hair straight. Snow still
remembers the princess’ whimper in the echoing bathroom,
Tiana’s incisors puncturing her own lip as if teething, the exposed

scalp. The mother listened for stops, no pleases. But the cries
never arose, fermented behind lips. At home in the castle bathroom,
Snow observes her own mouth even now. It didn’t choke on pleas,
but clenched while she lapsed under the poison’s appeal.

She and Tiana suffered under their first
crowns, their shoulders nursing tremors.
Snow waits for Charming’s first snip, to catch
his hands tangled in shears. He doesn’t
understand how everything becomes teeth.


Date: 2013

By: Nia Mendy (19??- )

Friday, 15 October 2021

Piano Before Breakfast by Priscilla Atkins

He has a piano that he plays before breakfast. Reminds me
of the guy on the other side of the wall in Mike’s apartment

on Wells. When I stayed there alone, every morning, sudden
plink-plink-plonk. Not screaming, but peppy; Bach, Bartok.

Five minutes, less, the wall popped. Then I’d hear the lid
close, the door click open / shut. Mike traveled so much

for his job, he never knew about the next-door maestro
(it was during this period I convinced him, long distance,

that frozen broccoli is better than no broccoli). I wonder
how many people play an instrument

for the last time, knowing, “Okay, this is it-the last time
I will ever hear your voice.” Or is it always shrill. Silence.


Date: 2013

By: Priscilla Atkins (19??- )

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Extinction by Rebecca Morgan Frank

We were tied to the weather.
Outside, houses turned their backs to the wind.
The dead sipped what was left from the ground.
The snowcover turned stale, darkened.
There was nothing left to discuss.

We were game heads, stares fixed,
tongues thick and permanent
in my molded gape, your grimace.
We couldn’t taste anything.
The carpet beetles were eating us alive.


Date: 2013

By: Rebecca Morgan Frank (19??- )

Friday, 1 October 2021

Imaginary Waltz with a Woman Wearing a Dress of Virga by Christopher Petruccelli

Her silhouette is caught between windows and hanging
cigarette smoke thin as muslin—elongated in streaks
of vodka tonic, moving like a Midwestern storm. I want nor’easters,
Tennessee gales, sneaking wind with its creeping
cool – the smell of thunder, cold copper with a hint
of tin, ground wet before it even starts to rain.


Date: 2013

By: Christopher Petruccelli (19??- )

Wednesday, 18 August 2021

Night Scene by Jonathan Hadwen

We were going to bed
so I turned the lights out
and saw then for the first time
the neighbours’ windows

and the light that
spilled from their windows,
and the way that light
spilled onto the footpath

outside the house.  I noticed
these things as our
lights were off, and
I was ready for bed,

and we were ready for
the night to take us
to the place it takes us
each night, each night

when I turn the lights out
and the neighbours leave
their lights on, spilling out
onto the street.


Date: 2013

By: Jonathan Hadwen (1977- )

Monday, 16 August 2021

Abstract by Jacqueline Buswell

you are at ease in this landscape
of brown grey lines and twisting bark
gnarled deformities on old trees
all dry and crackling in the heat
fallen branches force you into detours
you get lost in the abstraction
you find a sunken billabong
hear the screech and laughter of the birds

on a full moon night you watch the heavens
and shadows move around the shining bark
small creatures move in the rustling silence
you hear the plaint of the mopoke voice
a house was lost in a bushfire, you re-created
that destruction on a murky canvas

dawn light opens on a granite rock and you see
the saltbush plain stretching west below
you realise  you have never seen these distances
and a kangaroo is watching you

the valley turns with swathes of orange  settles to dun
the bird song ceases and you cast about for shade
you realise you’ll have to build it
you’ve seen the humpies, as a child you used to draw them

you pull together branches, bark and leaves
brushing away termites and spiders
you lean logs against a tree
you never were a builder  but by midday
you are snoozing under your rustic canopy
inhaling eucalyptus.

when you wake, you begin to paint –
that gold surround of pale blue
the iron red mountain
that mopoke night.

After an exhibition by Elizabeth Cummings
SH Ervin Gallery 2012


Date: 2013

By: Jacqueline Buswell (19??- )

Friday, 9 July 2021

[The Eye’s Greatest Delight] by Abu al-Fadl Abbas Ibn al-Ahnaf

We stayed in Baghdad against our will,
when we had become acquainted with her, we left involuntarily.

Loving lands is not our habit;
the bitterest in life is to leave people you love.

I left her though she was the eye’s greatest delight;
I left my heart there hostage.

From: Snir, Reuven, Baghdad: The City in Verse, 2013, Harvard University Press: Cambridge, Massachusetts, p. 65.

Date: c800 (original in Persian); 2013 (translation in English)

By: Abu al-Fadl Abbas Ibn al-Ahnaf (750-809)

Translated by: Reuven Snir (1953- )

Tuesday, 29 June 2021

The Fear of the Dark by Nan Cohen

The fear of the dark is the flame
at the end of a match: one scratch,
and it flares.
Then a voice calls in the night.
And you go to it.

Wherever earth is in shadow,
these fears burn like fires.
This one is yours.
You tend it. Feed it a stick.
The flame crouches
to eat the wood.

Serving the fire,
you don’t fear the dark.
You kneel to it,
hearing its voice
grow softer and slower, until
it says one more thing
you can’t hear. And sleeps.


Date: 2013

By: Nan Cohen (1968- )

Sunday, 23 May 2021

Souvenir by Kate Middleton

What else fashioned from earth survives?
Bone white; fired terracotta;
trickster raven black with turquoise eyes.
The geometric autograph of pueblo.

I can read some of those angles
in the palm of my hand: there in clay
and here in the palest nectarine flesh
of my broken-in child hands

—hands that chose the modest bowl
for a gift. The bowl’s turquoise eyes
alert to passage, unblinking as they are sunk
into a cardboard box. Paid in cash.

—Bought from hand that once closed
around its clay, moist, as if in prayer;
later wrapped it as roughly
as any piece of broken earth.

From: Souvenir | New Australian poetry, contemporary Australian writers & poetry education | Red Room Poetry

Date: 2013

By: Kate Middleton (19??- )

Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Saturday at the Shop by Lou Gallo

I liked Saturdays because that’s when the old man,
my grandfather, sharpened chisels on the whetstone.
Dad and I would saw plywood sheets into little squares,
for hours we ripped that wood, and the caustic sawdust
laced with formaldehyde blasted our faces.
It’s a smell we could never wash off. And our eyes
sometimes bled. But when the old man stood behind
that stone, pumping the lever with his foot,
and sparks from metal against rock zigzagged
out in a fiery cloud of silent, ephemeral sparks
so primitive time stopped,
we sometimes relaxed and just watched
the show.
Grandpa might look over at us and smile.
It seemed like anything but work.
And he always left early,
that sly rascal.

From: Lou Gallo, 10/28/2013 – Work Literary Magazine

Date: 2013

By: Lou Gallo (19??- )