Anna Couani #201 domestic

I often think about the domestic
remember the feeling of someone at home
and have been the someone at home
when on leave from work
the way the house smells
the way it feels to come home
a pot of soup bubbling on the stove
warm yellow light from outside
one house can seem so large
all those corners gathering dust
the washing on the line
someone might be upstairs
the cat curled up in a ball
heaters on especially on freezing days
cups of tea and home made biscuits
tins especially for that purpose
that feeling of home and work
all curled up and cozy together
gumboots at the back door
snug office chair at the computer
big brown autumn leaves in piles that crunch
a curl of smoke from the neighbour’s chimney
the outside light on filtering through the trees
and now when the split life isn’t so double
all patted down and next to a cushion

Janette Hoppe #27 Domestic Goddess

my washing machine is in revolt
and I fear that I am to remain a Domestic Goddess
eighteen years and five children later
this was not how I imagined my life

I once had aspirations of being a poet
a famous poet –
with excerpts appearing in other poet’s works
each year passing
another wrinkle in the place
where a poem used to be

you have never held me back
you have always been supportive
encouraging me to follow my dreams

But sometimes –
dreams fade in the waking hours
and the pile of poems in my head
are laundered with the daily washing

folded and forgotten.

Kerri Shying R # 59.1 Cul de Sac after Dark

Cul de Sac after Dark.

You wouldn’t like the crossword in
the Knuckle-Draggers Gazette
words with three letters
jokes all tackle out

but you laugh
and look round furtive
spruce-groomed weasel
wearing white collar drinking wine from glass

hide it in the neighbour bin
the way you hide the gout.

#218 Kevin Brophy ‘But not’
#218 But not

a room full of paintings
and then another room
full of paintings
and behind these rooms
a smaller room full of paint tubs
and an office where canvas
is stretched and prepared
and behind the room of paint tubs
and the office of stretched canvas
another room of conservators
digitising the images
recording stories behind the paintings
the thousands of them
a task that brings remembering
into the picture

almost too late

Jeltje Fanoy #48 are you mad

in-laws can be tricky,
going thru the motions
of being a family,
I think, we’re all
a bit paranoid,
afraid of being laughed
at, he suddenly said,
what are you laughing
about, are you mad, well,
no, what are you laughing at?

with a magnifying glass
you can see the weave
of the fabric,
the laughter you thought
was, at your expense,
we’re just laughing
at different things (that’s
why I never got married)
doesn’t hold water, of
course, at family functions

a house, nestled in
the landscape, the rules
about dress and cleanliness
inside, the landscape
beckons, flowers
on the trees, birds, calls
of strange-looking lizards,
perhaps it’s a child’s
laughter, the joy of being
outside, when, inside
it’s all rules and directives

hilarity, laughing at
the adults inside the house,
caged and colonized,
hidden from view,
absurdly rigid,
paralysing realities,
are you mad, well, no,
what are you laughing at?

Mikaela Castledine #229 Science on the Television

Sulphur blue burning
heme rust in blood
black and browns of old red
cooling shades of infrared
green the only colour
plants don’t use
probability of a rufous moon
shallow angled photons
glacial meltwater in the rift
spectrum tilted
to the scatterings of aquamarine

Efi Hatzimanolis #188 close

Dawn depletion, behind on sleep,
kookaburra calls out the day
for what it is. Close.
I put on my glasses.
How much do you know about morning?
I ask my husband. Even sleeping
he answers me.

Robert Verdon, #277, dreaming the life

you might psychoanalyse this
if it’s still fashionable
rug of fog on the fawn hill
winter wrack like
a torn dressing gown
in a mental hospital
as we gather nuggets
and blueberries, black
white and yellow pardolote
in the melaleuca at the
foot, there is a workman
in a bush by an electric
truck, people in the café know
us, but we have not been to
this part before, perhaps it is a
dream, like the one I had this
morning when an uncouth man in the
next banana chair rolled onto
me as if I didn’t exist
lying there like Death in Venice
but let us get back to gathering
if not of nuts in May then (and
what can anyone do?) as much
of the good times as we can
before we die
then the dawn will come up like a
bugled curtain rod, and swab up
all of us who have been in the wars
and in all the anxious peaces
of all the time there is

Rob Schackne #56
To Be A Wolf

for Zheng Xiaoqiong

He runs barefoot. The snow and ice
Heaven and earth. Mother between
The boy falls asleep
His father is missing for 3 days
Searching in the hills and meadows
His mother carries the babies

Heavy rain. 8 years old
His father’s body
What you learn from that
To be a wolf. Think like a wolf
The mountains are small
A mother’s hug.

He is 10. Already
He takes care of those who love him
He learns to sing the mountains
Where his father died
A thousand years of stars and tears
He sings them
Many years later he sings:

I am a bucket
My water is in the bucket
With your hand so sweet
Carry the sorrow and joy together
Make me a good life

A night that brings the next day
A day that lets us sleep in peace

We come from the mountains
We walk the streets like mountain paths
Our jobs are canyons
Our boss is a ridge
The salary is just a river to cross

A night that brings the next day
A day that lets us sleep in peace

I walk everywhere like a stranger
I pick my steps carefully
Perfect flowers I sometimes see in boxes
Her kiss tasted like wild honey
I am alone. I sing.


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