Kristen de Kline #13 – Black cats

Black cats

A black cat creeping up the side of the moveable bed, casters w-h-e-e-l-i-n-g across timber floorboards black cat one looking up at me, semi propped up in bed against fluffed up retro Hawaiian Hula girls lazy Sunday morning lazy Monday morning half sleeping not sleeping missing my girl plunger of coffee croissants oozing with butter and strawberry jam half sleeping not sleeping missing my girl. Black cat one sniffing at my fingers dangling out of bed – a truce? – black cat one retreats to another room, another bed, a black cardigan stretched out lovingly, black cat two sits over the ducted heating vent, looks at me – suspiciously? warily? Eyeing me off: where’s my Kath my breakfast fresh water what are you doing here

A grid of glimpses through bamboo blinds: tiles on the red roof of the neighbour’s house a young man’s voice says abruptly FUCK OFF another youngish voice, also male: PISS OFF YOURSELF followed by a long SSSSSSHHHHHHH (Mother? Grandmother?) a grid of glimpses through bamboo blinds: Silver SUV drives off too quickly the green waste bin is hooked up high – suspended in space like a hanged man – then dumped on the driveway a grid of glimpses through bamboo blinds: something spindly and green, overcast tones on the canvas, streaky blue lines hurriedly painted on the image – in the far right corner of the canvas you can make out the traces of black cat one sneaking through the cat-flap, black cat two camouflaged in the folds of a suede leather jacket, trying to be seen not seen what are you doing here where’s my Kath

Chrysogonus #68 – watching fado in Macao

watching fado in Macao 

old fortress
under moon that blooms

gentle sea breeze
of a humid October night

husky contralto
belting the ballad out

from her throat
deep the waves

in which we swim
ears least perhaps

this is rhythm
all in the chest

where memory
is found

because of the words
all out of language

because as the singer says
this is heart’s translation

Kit Kelen #291 – at fado

at fado
among the old cannons with Chrys
sultry October night at Monte Fort in Macao
I write these word in the dark
in the conversation of the chords
the strings, the words found in the heart
it is a desperate kind of respect
this fado
it is our hanging by a thread
in the storm
and yes there is a moon
a bottle for comfort perhaps
in those days
when the sky was simply up
then there was always the sea
how we are here now
the sea is a cruel truth
one must sing through the storm
sing louder than life
sing just to be
and so we touch
the moon
eyes fixed
where it breaks through
the storm’s dark
the one who would have drowned
was saved
saved by the firm hand held
by that voice in the storm
that’s how I was found
how I was hauled to safety
but the others?
so you see
we sing for those who’ve gone under
someone saved me
so I sing this now
that the hope in the storm
must remain
it’s like this
with my writing in moonlight
it’s only wishes I write down
I wish for a world of respect
and not power
for the truth of your voice
that you’ll truly hear mine
respect is a desperate need
for yours truly
to give
to receive
the truth
in the heart
in the voice
like a hand held out
to save the one drowning
never too late
say it
never too late
say it
and it is so
in poetry
in music
in all the art
between us
my medicine
my poison too
in the storm
your hand
I take it
take all the heart offers
all that will save me
art my raft
to which life clings
dear art
dear heart
dear life

Susan Hawthorne #290 Beyond Caravaggio

it’s what they say in their titles
but they always forget the meaning
of beyond
to go beyond is not only to follow
or add just a little here and there
to go beyond
is to go further not just in time
but in intent scale and originality
the beyond
I thought we would see was
the beyond of Artemisia Gentilleschi
a beyond
that broke even more rules than
Caravaggio imagine a woman going
so beyond
as to paint her trials of reputational
and physical abuse and rape
to go beyond
men’s truths her painting Suzanne
and the Elders is about disbelief
the rules of patriarchal lies her trial
not even mentioned in the captions
and beyond
the silence of Gentilleschi’s work are
the paintings not included in the show
polite conversation in which Judith
cuts off the head of Holofernes way
what any woman should imagine even
after years of social death and centuries
of erasure

15.10.16 (#288) a chick’s beak Myron Lysenko

a chick’s beak
cracks open the egg
Nobel Prize for Literature

Lucy Alexander #46 Shadows – Their Reflection

The water shakes in the last

quiver of winter

throwing back the distended trees

to the sky

and the sun makes fun

of our solidity

feet of dust

sea’s out of sight.

It is quiet, for a second

the mock coffee of lagoon

the sand a sugar pure

lines like dreams


shaking from their own chill

the wind loved your hair

and the fine metatarsals

of your extended foot.

Red Cone(LF)#254-sudden chill

sudden chill
yesterday hot
hot enough to get my socks off

studio warmth
with active brush work
and thinking

early this morning
planting seedlings
before the wet

now the fire

staring outside
wondering if cosmic rays
are passing through me

Chrysogonus #67 – at the dentist’s

at the dentist’s 

body pinned under
the torturer’s lamp

cold steel probes
must extract a confession

that mirror pressing on the gums
sees what I cannot

fat fingers, latex gloves
have forced the mouth open

this face, it’s mine
a frozen scream

when I can speak at all
it’s through the nose

what can I do but agree?
to all his hobbies, all his bragging

to the blind date he’s
setting up for me

tubuh terkunci di bawah 
sorot lampu sang penyiksa

tongkat besi menusuk 
mencabut pengakuan 

cermin menekan gusi 
melihat yang tak kulihat 

jemari besar, sarung tangan karet 
memaksa mulut membuka lebar

muka ini, wajahku 
teriak yang membeku 

suara dan wicara
berlari ke hidung 

tak ayal hanya bisa setuju
pada hobi dan bual sang dokter

rudapaksa pada karsaku 
perjodohan yang ia atur

Robert Verdon, #329, that last pilgrimage

my stomach is a balled echidna
we may soon stand on the brink
as we near the end of this
slippery slate path switch-backing to an edge
gravity awry
russet bonnets of cold shadow on our heads
tongues cold leather, hard as an old-time bicycle satchel
barely whistling in the graveyard of our radical doubt
that we can escape yet again
tent-pegs in the rising night gale
clinker rowboats on taut fraying painters
specks of bio-dust soon to be lost in the cosmos
someone says we’ll look back at all this and laugh

live to go on pilgrimage on some far-off future star-led day
when maybe we will all be less religious
and never have to go at all
such blasphemy does not go down well
as if God might strike us flat when we are so close
shuffling to a fearful stop at a cliff with the moon below our feet
more like three stooges than the magi of old
our little cult no longer a suburban game
and there is nothing in the valley but the glint of a tin shed
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