the day span as it passes
that I painted
some years ago
on the railway wall
all bright all new
clear and sharp
has now mellowed
a fine weathering
burnishing of graffiti
looks sort of
unlike a poem
softens or fades.
raynes park uk
Tagging an Insect
[Sic transit gloria mundi:
so passes the worldĻs glory. Old tag]
In the first light of morning
a dark shining jewel ≠
what's it doing in my house
sparkling on the glass-topped dining table?
It moves, on tiny legs,
with fine antennae, and is ≠
a splendid cockroach
between table-top and glass.
Yesterday in the museum
I saw many handsome birds
and insects all under glass,
tagged with hand-written Latin words.
I scan my short-term memory:
is that the Latin name
for the Melbourne cockroach
scuttling away from my dim beam?
The jewel is on the move,
rowing to a precipice.
Moth ≠ butterfly ≠ spider, even ≠
I might usher outside alive. Not this.
I aim, I spray,
I conquer: its glory
dies with it. Sic transit
gloria cockroach? ≠
the tag may fit
though the name be gauche.
North Balwyn, Melbourne
8.30pm Wednesday 24 March 2004
Breakfast, Beaumaris, 24th March 2004
Its weight amazes,
bulk filling my palm
as I cradle it
the treacherous six inches
to the countertop.
Unwrapped with reverence
from the kitchen towel
the carboot lady swathed it in.
A pencilled date -
but we've sealed our fates.
So I crack and crack
until a breach appears, fissure-thin,
spurring me on
until it finally splits.
A few gelatinous drops
clear the way
for a huge smug globe
on the base of the pan.
The whisk stutters,
unused to resistence
as I turn up the heat.
Desultory bubbles -
this bird takes it time.
Is it done?
I turn the saffron porridge
on my plate,
take the first mouthful,
chew and taste.
Desk: Not in Attendance
The door opens quietly
as we slip into a realm of ghosts, a hotel
honouring its Moores of the past and their Irish best.
In the solitude of an upstairs lounge
we find photos of Joyce, a picturegraph of
Moore, Shaw, Beckett, Yeats,
cold eyes staring at King William Street.
And in the heart of their collection, verse.
Life, it seems, at the Brecknock is short on cash.
Itís like a poet on a migrant ship
still looking to the shores of Innisfree,
on a downhill trail, desiring nothing more
than bee-loud paddies drinking with their mates
droning on about St. Patís day.
To me itís not a graveyard, just centuries old,
in the wrong part of town, now designed
for hitchhikers sensitive to fumes.
Still, thereís cornflakes, ironing-board toast,
a cavernous trickle, Adelaide calls water.
In the hallway we laugh and joke, crouch under
blinkered eyes, waiting for uplift. (This is a just a note
to others, we didnít leave a tip).
The festival of writers is why we came,
Coetzee in the East tent, Attwood, grey and proud,
Keretís magic piggybank,
or Grenvilleís perfect gaffe.
Not the heat though. Thatís not why we came,
nor the marquis queue, waiting for god knows.
Oh thatís right!
all those authorsí books.
Helen Hagemann, Perth - Wednesday 24/3/04
Today I could write of the stars, their peaceful influence
of how lovers meet in spring and offspring see their first winter day
of how branches bend under the weight of buds struggling upwards to new skies
or I could write of how spring breaks the world with hot/cold days
of milky sleepy hours and irritable moods, postponements of dates
on the complexity of human souls with their double faced incomprehensible fates
on the delirium money and fame can give and of what people can do to get them
of the perversity adversity dictates
of black poison meant to annihilate
of nightmares interrupted in sweat
of how the Book of Dead
was made real again
of how it was re-interpreted
once discovered the inextricable complexity of images
behind images - hands motivated by others' hands
& human psychology proved to be a limited toy
when compared with the skyscraping height
of nonsensical noise stammering to set
common I's on a towering glittering
madly-sickening position for
an ephemeral sniff of lust
slick trick gone abrupt
to tired eyes who
Anny Ballardini, Boden, Italy
on top of Winter Hill
illumined by the light
of the early morning sun
seen from my bedroom window
thirty miles away
for the first time
in twelve months
since the council
felled the trees
that blocked the view
one hour on --
the moor's outline
fades into the clouds
Hyde UK, Wed 24th March 2004 6-7 am.
Each eye snaps shut. I pull each open
in separate acts of will. Awake. The first
cool day in a week. This afternoon I am
slumped in a theatrette
watching a video with students.
The first cool day in a week
waits outside like a young love
outside the Star Cafe where that
old man always put malt in your shake
as a matter of course. It was the fifties
of course. I smile in the semi-dark.
Halfshut. Each eye. Credits roll.
I pull myself up and hunt
for the video switches
on the black panel board.
Students yawn and stretch.
I suggest a break for coffee -
they break for home. Okay.
I can see the exhaustion in
the exhange students' eyes.
I remind them of their essay as
they squeeze past to get out into
the first cool day in a week.
This tail end of summer
has busted records, so
the American student asks,
Don't you have Fall here?
We smile as we say,
this is autumn here, mate.
But winter's cold, yeah,
winter can be cold. He tells us
of his winter. Nah, we say,
not that cold. That's unbearable,
one girl says. I'm looking forward
to the Eagles, she says brightly
& the boos and hoots
start and I know I'm in Australia
and it's the first cool day
in a week.
Andre Burke, Australia
on the rails
all those wails
but on walls
a singing bird
whose nest is
soft as silk
of pignon and down
in the deep of night
I spoke with God
whose ear is
a circular silver sea
of upturned leaves
how clear the vision
came to me
and kissed my eyes
Deborah Russell, 03/24/04
Baltimore, MD USA - 11:20 am
Somewhere in Raynes Park
a boot stamps down.
Save me save me save
from that rainy zimmer frame.
Tomorrow Patrick will solve global warming.
Robin Hamilton Loughborough. 5.12 pm.
one hour ago watched
with my daughter
the movie "Pixel Perfect"
on the Disney Channel
and am thinking now over coffee
without a they no way
could we be most certainly
some of more whatever
images made Whitman's
and so we are pixel
West Irondequoit, Wed 24th March 2004 1:00 pm.
-- Jerry Schwartz
edge over paper
some crossing out
in blue biro
a thick felt pen
that blocks out the blank
mind, arm, hand, page, eye
white inner space
pours into tight tracery
City of Stoke-on-Trent Sixth Form College (UK)
Wed 24th March 2004 12.35pm
ABSORPTION & ADDRESS
via Michael Fried
Antithetic emphasis on what I shall call "address"
but nothing in previous painting matches.
of a boy crying out in pain.
Right corner is often a highly-charged zone.
Petrarchan poetry . . .
To be enjoying the experience of posing
is the best way to cut
off a head.
Neither the heads nor any
advent of a new, more urgent, more interpolated
determining, anyway a
remain on the board
ever so slightly. From behind
sits facing directly out of the painting
stigmatized as "theatrical".
Barry Alpert / Silver Spring, MD US / 3-24-04 (7:26 PM)
Poetryetc is a listserv relating to poetry and poetics which provides a forum for poets to debate their critical and creative work. The list has over the years run a number of projects for its members, of which Snapshots has been the most enduring.
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