Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Strange Fruit.

the street opened and towards me rushed
                        a heaving winter breeze
in it was a smelly little breath / a reminder
that warmer things would come

and in it i remembered /

that you are some strange fruit
with glaring sunlight skin, soft in an irksome way
like a bruise.
                        when you’re near me i feel gross / unrefined
because i want to touch you / touch the kind of skin
that touches back
            puckers the pads of fingertips, leaves powdery follicles
under fingernails. i say gross
because i’m lazy
and i haven’t found the right word yet / but it feels like gluttony
like a smell
that mums want rinsed away.
                        i don’t know when i started feeling this way 
                        towards you
                        when your mouth became a tangerine / mushy
                        unprotected from me
                        // but it’s more than that

it’s the coming of spring and your house / its trees
it’s the drooping orange sun / the stretchy evening
the golden orb setting up its web, it’s the driveway dew
                        the possums / their babies
                        and all their human-like hands

it’s the champagne coupe
filled with orange juice
they call it ‘kitty’s glass’
            and it’s reserved for me
            for when i come around.

i was in the park
where we had never been together
it was unchartered territory / a place where you were not

and i inhaled an imagined childhood
/ this park, I could have grown up in

the trees, their arthritic wrists
creaking in breeze
their spindly little fingers / branching across cloud
became, steadily, the capillary veins
of your nostrils
it's the way you're in everything, i think

Monday, 1 June 2015

be merry

i woke and i couldn’t stop running
like a train was late
i had all these metallic comments
jiggling inside my brain

couldn’t wrench a gap
big enough to drip them out

i purposely fuelled that little ego, tryna
flesh out some form of defense in there,
tryna compete for complacency

with my mind set like an interface
i crumble under all that communication
lazy like menstrual blood in the sheets

‘hey darling what’s your name’ he says
i pretend he isn’t there while his question lingers
let it get sucked back whence it came, like spit after vomit
let them all get kicked in the shin

i recoil in my seat while he sits
his legs spread like a lap dance patron
kneeing me in the back
my eyes start chatting up a storm inside my brain
and quietly
my teeth
plot mischief

and i was talking to people, you know, conversation
outwardly i was at full function
useful appliance, i do good
creep inside i’m orchestrating
a little war

and in the office i’m scruffy, my angles don’t match
the sleek black chair beneath me
i watch the men, bulky, jagged and civilised
their voices like low piano scales
racing each other out of breath

and i think, fuck them and their houses
their big, grey houses
and all their shiny cars.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015


the glass above me, black
with velvet hours and heavy
i was wearing my elbows in again, wringing
wrists like my future self. pre-emptively arthritic
in the mind

but i get these day dreams
neck-to-neck with rationality, competing in jest
like a reunion match for nostalgia’s sake

he was rattling toward me, big
chunks of metal and plastic grating on the bitumen.
i could imagine the smell of warmth
the bodies at rush hour

i could imagine his head, big lollypop
glazed eyes lolling along the scenery

and later, combing his hair down the middle,
slighted by the oncoming troop, ruthless
the regime of self doubt

monday. second guessing-
the dullness of the street and its personal lack of traffic
the cars that do are yellow
dimmed like old photographs

the photo, with my eyes closed and her teeth open
dark browns and greys, a smokey palate
for the palliative

her fingers got skinny like fine smooth branches
placed the ring in my hand said look after this
went back to her pudding, never left

with my compass i set the altar north and salted
my little prayers. who is this tinny voice
my personal cheshire, little grinning cherub
no longer earthbound

talking back the days through ashes
and the flowers from their cremation

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

seasonal diary


for me, it was endless
the lapping of the day, the weather
looking for ways to slow my heart beat

she was there, her slow geography
merging with my usual context
sitting in the garden, eating crumbs of sedation

the university grounds
pooling around me
like the greyness of a shopping centre

and when the night time came i met him
down a crooked street, we walked hand in hand
ordered chinese, ate with silver chopsticks
mashed our tongues together in the cold of 8pm

later, minutes, happily aneasthetised
reading horoscopes and swaying round the platform
closed my eyes the whole way home
shimmering over lamp lit gutters

sunday night i climbed aboard his bed of doubt
and all was dark save for laptop screen.
when i woke
my personal groundhog day
greeted me with familiar hurricane

i worked it out, though
got through all the admin stuff
got to the core, my little cup
tipping lively down the throat of struggle

we woke to fuck and slept again
fed the dog and watched the moon

her clean kindness shone
in my feigned domestic sovereignty
and weariness felt lighter
when i let all that muck settle down

bodies curled like question marks, turning like a key
tonight i’ll continue my little hobby
of rewiring my brain.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

kind of like clapping

i walked your street, it was morning
like a public holiday
daylight’s fingers
messing with my inner winter.

i could feel the flower bed, fox’s house,
the place where santa was. ‘we know you,’
they say, turning like little doors.

the hill under the house is tall
the wind rattles its joints. outspoken leaves
litter the yard, still scattered
with past conversation.

the cupid angel sits and waits, the numbers
tumble round // waiting for an answer.

as if i didn’t know --

in the dehydrated first gasp
of post-wine morning
i forgot, i think, to pretend.

heavy in their sockets and tired
of their duty. i'd laugh off the worry
if it wasn't stuck like mould.

in the office she took my card
avoided my smile, sent me back
to my seat where i sat and remembered --

the time we were running
(for the train? not sure) my shoes
broken and anyway. 

i've been here before, the letterbox knows --
my brain, a soft pool of uncertainty.

quiet street, the cars have turned away
and the dogs all lie fence bound.
cloud break makes tanbark look warm,
but i know that it’s not.

i skipped the puddles, her scattered talk
on things, i mean, everything--
thought you’d left
turned to window

saw nothing but cloud
i think.

Sunday, 22 March 2015

sleep drips from the foliage.

i slept next to your nightmare 
in the bed where we smoked the hash
feeling all the feelings put on hold.             ‘they’re not threatening, anymore.’
you said about the dream catchers, the crow’s skull interrupting my frequency.
i put my foot down, felt the floorboards, reminded myself of time.
drank the jar, swallowed you whole, there wasn’t much to say.

i trembled around the room, struggling with jewellery,
tripping on my active imagination. thinking back, three weeks ago, i came
with an extra heart beat.             //            left with a smoothie in my hand.
i walk through the trees, she sits with a cigarette,
asks me if i’m okay. for some reason i’m a part of her family now,
i’m struggling with all the things i care about.

in the kitchen you told me of our past lives, i was so happy to listen.
when i woke up in the supermarket, the milks were singing cruelly
and the day seemed preemptively dark.
i learnt the words off by heart and bought a bag of spinach.
the song carried me home, my feet limp in the air, the trees joined in the chorus-
night time waits for no one.

from one bed to the next my hands shake along, counting all your concerns.
the figs were split and dried, the tree was heavy and indifferent.
he came in drunk and hugged the dog and lay
facing the wall                                               i was crunching biscuits
between my teeth and looking
for an excuse to stay. i ran back and forth, in my mind’s eye, between our conversation
and reality. out of breath i collapsed on the grassy hill
of my imagination and i imagined
us sleeping side by side. 

our ankles touching. 

in the morning blue and grey, clammy sheets over sweaty limbs,
climbing out to find myself and standing tall in the mirror.
a lifetime of night time, the dream catchers release us, if only for a day.
i walk along, carrying books, trying
to come back. i'd like to go back there soon.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015


menopausal temperature fluctuations
swilling around like coffee dregs
trying not to touch the sides
soundless movement that fucks around
your insides.
plugging in and out 
of love
and feeling the walls around the others
and feeling the floor
of my womb
and the muscles
in a joyous celebration
of their relevance.

brown and murky - satisfactory
            the blank white page is the only thing
that i find truly dirty. perverse. upsetting.
to settle
is to acknowledge your lack
of fixidity. fixedness. fixidation. the middle word is correct.
the others are lexically
irrelevant. yesterday
great heaving sobs
like a backpack full of writhing mice
made me reconsider
my state.

on the oval, where i wasn’t
the children cartwheeled, she said.
how nice it must be, to have such mobility,
to have such a day
full of movement.
on the train,
i made eye contact (decidedly)
and the results varied. most were unwilling.
on the train,
i made a decision
to never grow so old again.

and i’ll catch the buses
and the buses
and i’ll wipe the vinegar down. i’ll wipe
the makeup off my face and wipe
the doorframe fingerprints. i’ll open and close
the water bottles, i’ll pull the hair
out of hair ties, i'll pull
on coats under blaring sun and sweat
in the evening breeze, i'll
take what i'm given i'll ask
for more - i'll take what i'm
after i'll
the price i'll ask
for directions i'll ask
for help
i’ll write down
email addresses i’ll write
down words 
and words
and words.

Friday, 27 February 2015

diary entries

write it out for your bad days. think out the knots in your spine and call me when your hands are done healing. call out to the birds and ask them to come back - send me a post card. we sat cross legged and found god, apparently, and your eyes were mine sitting in a different skull. i've never found the words to describe the feeling of complete ownership we had over each other. i don't need the words, but i want to hold your seventeen year old self's hand. i like where you live in my head never ageing.

i sat down to write out my bad days and my mind's eye flicked from a night time bus ride to a hug shared with a friend whose arms enveloped me and warm hands found the cool skin of my lower back, face to neck, ear to breath. i wanted to live in that moment forever. blood. i bled all over your hands that winter night with the rain outside and i thought we could have been in any century, blood of my blood, i snuck out in the morning. i dreamt of a constantly shifting landscape that i had to cross and i doubted my own strength, i woke to a body curled around mine and untangled myself to pass the time, i stood in the doorway and thought about all the lovers i've left sleeping, scampering out, anaemic weakness bleeding.

i dreamed you next to me again. i watched the shadows grow along the wall as time rolled past me like it always does. i watched the dusk circle in the orange light of i've-slept-all-day-again. i got up and wandered through the house, not my own, this time. i wandered through the halls and i wondered about my health and i thought about writing a letter but i didn't. i went back to bed and lay there listening to the sleeping breath of others and counted my own heartbeat. i rolled into oblivion and dreamt i was sappho, standing cliffs edge with last poem clasped to heart. the scene morphed into one of my own stories and i was the swimmer ready to dive. the room materialised around me and i dreamt that i woke up and walked out of the house, everything was crumbling to dust and the sky was a shocking blood red. i woke up for real and thought about calling my mum, i think she had a dream like that once.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015


your baby is about as big as a fig,
the internet told me.
we used
to have fig trees.
they don’t work anymore.
my mum collected buckets
of figs – they sat
on the doorstep
fermenting. ‘i’m going to make jam,’
she would say,
but they’d fester and smell
and the guests would laugh
she’d say ‘shit, i better throw those things out.’

‘i’d kill for a fuckin’ big mac,’ said the girl,
showing me photos of her boyfriend
and her, standing on bondi beach.
tanned and glamorous
with neck tattoos
i said they both looked beautiful.
pleased with this,
she put her phone away,
and smiled at my stomach.

sometimes my dad
would express his disdain
as the plump fruit smacked the windscreen.
their sugary stains would have to be cleaned
before the juices hardened.
otherwise they’d become streaks like spit
that felt like toffee
and stuck like wax under fingernails.

sometimes i ate them (the figs)
with a spoon
in the same way you would eat a kiwi.
these days i eat kiwis
in the same way you would eat an apple.
it seems less wasteful,
how it all disappears.

last night, i became annoyed
at the shallow way my spacebar presses down
(cordial spill earlier in the evening, 
no one’s fault in particular)
i crammed my nails under the edge
and lifted to reveal its innards.
little organs of silver chips
with golden markings.
how vulnerable it all is,
under there.

‘it has fingernails,
under there,’ 
she said, then the lady
called her name.