Woody Allen warned me I would love you,
with two and a half aching minutes of moments captured:
Parisians drinking coffee with no milk, no sugar.
Rain on the cobblestone streets, gushing through gutters.
Lovers touching lips over stone bridges, ancient, nouveau.
I had dreamt, the good little Poet Girl,
captured by cliches and ensnared by the writings
of the Greats in an Age that no longer means a thing
to us with the smart phones and instant coffee.
I promise you, Paris, my once-love: I tried.
I ached for swirling skirts, billowing scarves,
melted chocolate over crepes, and I found them.
But I found new locks on old buildings, too:
polystyrene made in the image of marble,
dreaming of grandeur, achieving only imitation.
I carried a Moleskine with me everywhere
(Hemingway commanded me to, you see)
but there were only broken stories and the same pretty words:
meaningless, tired, overused.
Paris, I am sorry.
I know that to stand on the observation deck
of the Eiffel Tower by night, with the city lit by fireflies,
and a lover by your side is one of life’s great joys.
But to kiss him here,
in his pyjama shorts and with coffee breath,
in a kitchen messy and scattered,
is more beautiful than all the cathedrals
you can offer me.
I had a piece published over at VARIA LitMag: “Flesh of my Flesh, Blood of my Blood.” Please check it out over here. x
I have just been accepted as a general editor for Thistle Magazine!!
So much of who I am right now, in this moment, sitting here with a steaming cup of tea and waiting for the heat to slink back down to the Southern Hemisphere, is defined by latitude and longitude. I have been so many places: seen so many cultures, touched so many relics and tasted so many cuisines. Everything I see is shaped by the knowledge that wherever I am now, whatever I might be seeing, there is something equally as amazing on the other side of the world. I travelled from a young age. I adored the feeling of getting on a jetplane, of not knowing what I would smell or feel when I stumbled tired off the plane on the other end. But now: in this moment, I dread it. The three people I love most in this world are spread across the continents like bread crumbs, but it is a trail that I cannot follow, no matter how much I long to. Qatar is hot and dry; Connecticut distant and quiet, and Sydney beckons me like an old friend, her curling fingers summoning me to the crystal waters of Bondi and the easy breathing of the city. And everywhere I go, every city I make home for a little while, I’m just always reminded that somewhere, around the world, is someone I love—and I cannot reach them.
The old house across the way,
cracked wood, cracked spines inside,
plays the gramophone constantly.
Merry-go-round hymns float gently
on summer breezes: slowly.
They dance on sunbeams,
gliding through the open window.
Fairy dust hangs in the light
and waits to touch a hopeful heart.
I am warmed by carousel laughter
and piano notes. Here, trapped:
confined to this armchair:
I watch June sail by.
The cock crows in the afternoon, confused
with the way that time meanders slowly today,
Dawn can take place when
we want it to: illumination and banishment of dark:
why wait for time to do it for us?
Curled up like a foetus waiting patiently
in his mother’s womb for the moment of
to begin, I sit here. I am waiting for the birth
unfolding, refolding, consuming, resuming.
When it comes, I will crow
for dawn is nigh, and the world
needs to know:
I am awake.
I said to you:
breathe, feel, let the words pour out of you
because they already live within your marrow.
I said to you:
poetry comes as easily as a heartbeat,
unthinking, pounding, every quiver of your ventricle
a stanza, every rush of blood to your arteries, a couplet.
I said to you:
you are the Lord of your own life.
Bring forth light, banish the darkness—
if you wish it, it will Be.
the revisionary Messiah,
I say to you:
it is not so.
Poetry is a fickle mistress.
She is tantalising, her hips swaying down the street,
bringing waves of longing like a storm to a ship: wood beckons
the end on water. Now and again, a flash of lightning words,
illuminating a landscape untouched, unexplored,
beautiful without understanding. But the thunder rolls,
and we are deafened. These words, these lines,
these little rhymes and rhythms that we clutch to us
like blankets to a child: they dissipate, light smothered by darkness.
Poetry is as a storm: she comes as suddenly as she goes,
and Heaven above, she will leave you with nothing if she can.
And Poetry, that woman with the Devil inside of her,
will make sure that you mean nothing until
you have captured the words and wrung them to the page.
Oh, but the lack of pretty sentiments and
heartfelt metaphors in this may not fulfil you.
I warn you, though, you hopefuls with flowers in your hair:
To write a poem,
be ready for war.
Happiness is daisy chains:
simple, pulled from the earth,
entwined with another to form
an endless loop of petals&white.
To be filled:
endlessly, again & again.
Overflowing, a fountain
of heartache, desire.
Words erupt like lava
from lips, soft as petals:
these words are beautiful.
Simply said, elegantly whispered,
unassuming as snow.
They are as paper before ink.
It is only once we think
that they start to sting:
spider bites, bee stings,
a mosquito sucking blood
as a lover may suckle on your breasts.
I do not need to be filled with warm coffee,
with soups, salads & sustenance,
with your tongue & your fingers.
I do not need to be fulfilled by anything
save your gaze:
a moonbeam that shatters my freckled skin.
I simply crave your words of adoration,
and your sleepy, contented smile.