I'm deaf to the world.
Conference weekend, New Norcia,
a strange and Catholic place.
I'm not Catholic -
not even Christian -
but a spirit is there.
Entropy and order sing
in the walled spaces and endless view,
old buildings and new birds,
disused rooms, souvenir shop,
graveyard, church and bell.
So I sent a question.
And yesterday, the answer arrived.
There is no good, no evil.
Only harmony and disharmony.
And we know which is which.
Janet Jackson, WA
a secret only
a boared Bob Dylan
at 15, 30, 60 seconds
he'll tell you
Lima in Venice
in a bra
is enough to make
any man love sick
what a song
on these tracks
hurry up please it's time
out of mind
Edmonton, Canada, 08:30
do the poems
or the pictures?
but one has to
be the the first
other the second
but then which?
pen or brush?
brush or pen?
or take my pills
take my pills
pmcmanus 9am raynes pills uk
after shamballing the moon pill
perhaps too long last night
With storm promises, without yesterday's fog
a preparation for the holiday.
Gusts of timing are unclear
though I test the wind on my fingers.
Gum leaves, palm fronds bow or slack.
There's brilliance above and behind.
Something cold and playful about the station.
Girls take photos using their phone
a group slouch and haggle
boys in school shirts argue some point
or the other.
Show crowds appear - what is this? - happy
about cattle, sheep, rodeo and cats
(and rats - a first this year).
Again, possibility - another year's easter rain
or indecision in temperature -
leads to reverie on Olympic Park platform
over directions of carnival mood
while the city's crown of clouds
replaces yesterday's mistful blanket
on all the brown buildings.
I go north then east in my alighted way
but all round the grey angels blow
as the south comes along
and breathes me through.
Jill Jones, Surry Hills, Wed 7 April, 9.50 am
Here, we watch the water
for the first yachts,
filing a course through the Straits,
leaning against the wind,
testing sails that haven't been
unfurled for months.
I follow each boat
through the span
of my bay window,
imagine the rest,
the progress past the pier,
white cloth reflected
in each pane of glass
of the seafront terrace
as it curves its way
towards Penmon and the light.
A second has appeared,
tied up unseen over night,
It circles on its moorings
as the wind shifts.
Beaumaris, April 7th 2004
That dent in the bonnet of my wife's car
I might press it back straight from underneath
soft metal, simple task.
No, she says, I think I'll keep it.
Passing the Harp Hotel the other night -
thump! she smote a drunk jaywalker hip and thigh.
He rolled off, called from the kerb "I'm OK",
and his mates told her the same.
At home soon after she didn't feel OK.
Over it now? almost, but happy
for the bonnet to represent
her slight lingering depression.
Passing the Harp with her these days,
thump! I mutter by way of therapy.
(The Harp, with its tall ads: "Tonight
on the big screen the big fight"...)
8.00 pm Wednesday 7 April 2004
North Balwyn, Melbourne
You know what I mean.
Hell's gates are still open,
the burning boars of Envy & Rage
with the Hounds of Resentment
snapping at the Opfer ~
the Scapegoats & the Scum ~
and their overlords,
Empire and Dominion,
doing the Strut
at the Grand International Hunt Ball bash
in their designer battle togs
their teeth flashing
for the cameras.
Lagorce, 12.45 Romance Time
via Leo SteinbergPictures, their
vacated geometry suggests depleted voids, voided containers.
Snuffed out. Empty icons.
Wholeness; then imply oneness by sacrificial negations - as
Brach does - asking, and making me ask.
Drained in romantic renunciation until even the figure-ground [differential . . .
What varies most is the pigment's density & the pressure of buried color [below.
Circles: ashen disks in a strafing light,
portholes in a dark field. As you change position,
Barry Alpert / Silver Spring, MD US / 4-7-04 (9:47 AM)
against the misty blue of juniper
magenta azaleas blaze
brushed in a single stroke
a flame of brilliant colour
each blossom curls,
unfurls in waves
the pink of them reflects
in the doorknob
of mother's house
a snail on the window screen
its silver sheen in a path of memory
my hand opens to grasp
and clings to childhood
Deborah Russell, Baltimore, MD USA
04-06-04 (daughter's 23'd birthday)
the garden outside my office window
ought to afford some useful material.
The tree is wearing blossom that might
put you in mind of a bride's dress,
were you that way inclined. Tulips
are smart and glossy; the heather
is making a high-spirited territorial
bid for the path; narcissi gossip
in groups. But the daffodils,
the daffodils are learning
about mortality, the hard way.
Two of us at work stand outside
smoking, homing to the light
like cats to a sunbeam
laugh and stretch ourselves
a day finally to purr.
get into the house
they flap around
they sit in plain sight
they hide in corners
they hide on the shelves
camouflaged by their cousins who live here.
Once in a while I track them down
and send them packing
back to where they came from.
The first late notice was a list of three escapees.
The second reminder came today:
only two books listed.
Which means that "Jungle Adventure" had been captured in the meantime
but "Under the Microscope" and "Garden Critters" had made
a successful bid for freedom.
11 pm, 7 April 2004
of gloss paint pressed
against eyes and skin.
The brush moves smoothly
when it is loaded
and grates when it dries.
Great pale blotches
still on my arm, as I sit
with wine and a friend.
7th April 2004
(Full Moon at 15.60 Libra
April 5 at 12.04 pm GMT, 2003)
Poets couldn't but be transfixed by the beauty of the Moon in Libra
they called her shamballa, Artemis from Delos opening tunnels besieged by boars
companion of Persefone, Hecate queen of night, Selene in Heaven
depicting her rarefied rays _white bone_ circle crystals of light
they invented colors from violet to bottle green both attuned and resonant
shades & shadows breathtaking nuances suspended among dark clouds
even of a perfectly double mirrored rainbow they talked me
and followed & preceded her up & down rivers drawing hills
through Breugel, Hieronymus Bosch, a Friedrich Caspar David alive
attracted by her luscious shivering beauty someone stated
Tiresias saw her.
Anny Ballardini, Bosen, Italy
upstairs and downstairs
four hours in all
sweeping out dead ants
from behind the tumble-dryer
unearthing an odd sock
two pieces of jigsaw
and an old toy car
tipping a vase of flowers
over the television
to find unfaded bits of carpet
after they've gone
we rearrange disturbed ornaments
search for the hand-painted ashtray
that was under the vase
they knocked over
empty the dishwasher
and microwave a late lunch
Wed. 7th April 2004
head-on collisions. In the garden
tulips, daffodils, chickadees.
Heavy machinery turning dirt
in the neighborhood park.
Window washers, tree-
trimmers, grey snake sliding
across the path. All Spring's
workers. Crows riding uncertain
winds. Mosques and synagogues
exploding. Here, in this small
city, streets cordoned off
an entireafternoon --
bioweapon bomb scare.
And the woodpecker drilling,
drilling the power pole.
there's that parcel again
that long-lost parcel
admittedly a bit thinner yet
bound with the same old string
without its poem of origin
nesting now in a different one
perhaps one it has gathered
through time like moss
and it's turned pale blue
it never was blue before
it had simply the hue of
pale yellow and brown as
the lost poem in question
and now there's an alien text attached
telling me what's inside
and it does seem to make sense
11:47 april 7 2004
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.
Every Wednesday, Poetryetc members were invited to post short poems on any subject or in any form they chose. The idea was to make a poetic collage of instamatic snaps of that day that reflected the international membership of the list. The project has generated an astounding number of poems.
The first two runs, of six weeks each, and the first ten weeks of the third run, are archived at Wild Honey Press www.wildhoneypress.com under Poetryetc Project. The rest - amounting in all to a run of a year - are archived here.
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