Online Submissions for Fresh Poetry September 2007 issue.
Scroll down the page to read new works by WA Poets: Ross Bolletter, P L Jones, Chris Konrad, Damon Lockwood, Annie Otness, Kelly Pilgrim-Byrne (nee Pilgrim), Emma Rooksby and Taffy...
Every time we say goodbye
Under my Cape Lilac turning yellow
my friend a black poet from Sudan and I
eat chilli mutton rice and onion cooked by him
My orange umbrella darkens Night reduces us
to voices mine avid his measured as he jokes
‘The mosquitos don’t bite me because they haven’t
seen me yet’
He reads his poems in Arabic
His English woman friend translates
The mosquitos see her all right and bite
through her wispy floral skirt She soothes
her backside with Citronella while she sings
low voiced jazz – Every time we say goodbye
I cry a little…
‘Memory’ says the poet
trying not to recall waking
with a gun in his face at 2am –
twenty-three arrests twenty-three
imprisonments without charge or trial
‘Memory’ soldiers rip the coverlets
from his children who burrow into their beds
as if to leave their bodies like remnants of a feast
not worth touching
through the suburbs of lacklustre night
my true friends’ homes glitter – they make
a dispersed village a spread eagle constellation
though much too scattered for the Greeks
to have named
it’s what my heart departing
might still hold to itself all choices
now being the right ones or the only ones
that could have been made
the Indigo Café’s table limps
we chock it black coffee spirals
into blood rapids blood falls I no longer
rehearse my eager story as you tell yours
an unhurrying sun warms our spines
Response to a painting “untitled”
by Julia Parks
Midland Tafe, 2007
with your tools
you scrape me
trowel my body
with thick, wet paint
see my shoulder
raise my arm
an open shell
push the paint
to shape a breast
pucker it around
a raised nipple
with the palette knife
use sharp edges
to shape a curve
press me into figure
I am naked
hiding my eyes
P L Jones
Cross beamed sentinel,
sagging spaghetti strings string you
in a dancing silver conga line through
the valley. So together yet so strung out
love, regret, joy, sluice through your wires.
Beam arms crucified against mercury blue skies
through reckless weather you carry it all.
So anchored and benign at your post you stand.
Nothing seems to strain you yet strained you remain,
unquestioningly, you carry out your task.
In an instant we are all as one
as tensioned tidings you dutifully deliver.
which leaf shall die
which stem will thrive
in the sure approach of
sticks and stalks
are just shrill fingers,
rattling their knuckles
at the grey lines above.
(they know of beauties,
but like blind men dreaming,
pools wink on the pavement,
painting their song
dogs stand and wonder.
there is a silence
with the promise of persistence –
buds mount their attack
within the shivering skin
Dream Beach 13 Noon
We need not ever fear to remember midnight
The wind whips the ocean to a foaming froth
Gulls wander in the shallows
And seek to share the filamental shade
Of whispering casuarinas
Too hot for thirst
We lie like infants on the silver sands
Of tropical beaches
Do not swim, the warm water
The mosquitoes rest and wait
In the denseness of hot midday air
The sun seems riveted in the blue shallow sky
The birds are quiet but in the fringing shade
The great iridescent butterflies
Flutter like half forgotten memories of dreams
Great creamy flowers blossoms open out
It has never been cold
We are entwined as lovers on the indolent beaches
Waiting is all – the burning sun will slowly navigate
The shadeless skies
Come evening it will set to horizons clouded glory –
Another wonder of the end of days
Lost in the memory of the noontide heat.
A family has moved into our shed,
built a cosy corner in an old nest box
we should have discarded years ago
in a roadside collection. Instead
it’s humming with chitter chatter
as they decorate the walls with molten
magnificence, slippery as a Dali clock,
golden as iridescent daisies. Flock
like this are mysterious kin,
winged, fickle little critters
coming and going like dust.
Kelly Pilgrim-Byrne (nee Pilgrim)
It’s high time we began the spring-cleaning,
the sun’s lit on dust indulged too long
by shadow and sloth. There’s so much built-up grime
breeding infection in those corners, so many germs;
the floors are foul. Tonight we must put the photographs
in order in the albums, set their edges neatly along
the corrugated sheets, because holidays and highlights
deserve frames to preserve their meaning.
We should get out more, visit friends, learn
languages, instruments; acquaint ourselves with the lore
of five continents, because nobody can coldly
turn their backs on such abundance.
We must work hard, be diligent, put money aside,
make sure we get the most out of our lives.
And please, when you go out, leave a light on
because, because I am afraid.
The fairway’s getting longer
and the green is getting littler,
I’ve spent so long in the bunker
now I’m getting mail for Hitler.
I wish I had a caddy
who’d suggest the better clubs
but instead I play with someone
who suggests the better pubs.
I smack the ball it goes left, right
I think I’m in the army
scratching balls in prickle bush
is driving me bloody barmy.
Should I use a chipping wedge
or should I use a putter?
The more I play the more I think
I’ll turn into a nutter.
I always do my best to fade
and miss the fairway trap
but I’m not the only one out there
who has a handicap.
Practising makes perfect
well you know that might be true
but I’m sick of the buggers just behind
saying ‘Mind if we play through?’
And then back to the clubhouse
and you tally up the hits
just three more than last week
Jesus golf gives me the shits.