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Alan Wearne
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Bad Habits I take the hap of all my deeds. George Meredith Modern Love XX 2.50 what? The night's at kickback stage. And if I'm the man heading to LAX you must be Madison, monument to your sex, sweet, groomed, worldly and my daughter's age, with cute, white slivers of k'thwack k'thwack for hours of bug-eyed frenzy. Till the chop. And 'Ken,' I'm hearing, 'reckon we oughta stop, or name us a worse place for your heart attack.' But bad and badder habits hunt in packs: if y'urge says Go! so y'splurge y'dough oh ain't that par for one horny... Continue reading
Posted Dec 29, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
Delivering Tact At your front gate an oily truck murmurs away patiently enough, it could be said, while two young blokes in tattoos and muddy denims tug the small heavy sacks up to your house. They are delivering tact and it’s expensive but worth every penny of the cost, given it makes the whole shebang tick along smooth and quiet like the innards of a bedside clock. That’s right: it lubricates existence. You take delivery sign a docket and the truck puffs up white dust. Locked in a jail of ribs, the passionate heart judders the way a cranked car... Continue reading
Posted Dec 15, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
Mark Mark finished it himself, choosing midnight and a garbage littered swamp. He scrawled a note and stuffed it in a pocket: ‘Like shooting a dog. The Vibrations. Someone please try to bring me back.’ They pulled him from the mud and dressed him up and put him underground again. A week before that he’d grabbed me in the street, shaking, speaking in a foreign tongue. Lost for seven years. ‘It’s all right, I’ll move along,’ he said. Cosmic radiation fried his brain. He had tapped a private source of horror clichés; nightmare rushed out, and the gestures that he... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
from Crying In Early Infancy 16 Sex chemistry is elegant and subversive, like how it comes crawling out of a hole where the idea of ‘Christine’ swallows itself and suddenly begins to bother everyone – she’s heavy, hot off the Paris plane with her handbag full of perfumed machinery, with her waterfall of blonde hair blowing with her embrace for Tony and Louise especially Louise with whom she has been intensely in love for centuries and just like a snap election the two of them – silly buggers, they should know better – Chrissie, her machine, Louise and the hostess... Continue reading
Posted Dec 1, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
An Autumnal When I come back to this garden after my death will the black walnut tree have been cut down, the brick-and-galvo studio made over into flats reflecting what will have happened all over town? I wonder just what my airy after-self will find that the present me could even recognize roughly, as being something we lived amid; what will confront my hypothetical eyes and spiritual vision? Will the bluestone paving be there, tangled vines and archaic gingko tree? I wonder how my grandkids’ generation will be getting along: at all familiarly? If a posthumous person can view things... Continue reading
Posted Nov 24, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
The Constant Measure The oven’s tipped open as a bar heater its red art deco zags another age’s faith in a designed century as a Chevrolet unscrolls up the hill and the painted-from-life steeple’s pleated shadows carve out long wedges specifying a theorem you once knew, like your life, sparkling over the top of a drink “Spirit of the Plains”, etc, while every unwinding gesture salutes some mirage or schtick tilting on its axis. The landscape doesn’t change. The tree collects its rings Hope’s waterlilies bubble on the pond’s face accompanying imagination that conjures his blank escarpment but softness fields,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
In Memorium Clara Elizabeth Lampe was not married to my grandfather, I found this from her death certificate 30 years after she fell backwards Into my mother’s arms while putting a jar of Vegemite into an ice safe. She slept in my room for 6 months each year, a snoring Farting belching hump in the centre of an old iron bed: At night the ghosts in the corner whispered her name, & I hid beneath the sheets & folded myself into the dark silence. When I hit the spoiled son of the local stock & station agent with a stone... Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
sesame the flowers on the cactus came and went like a speed boat across the plate glass you wake up and then you fall asleep wink quick or is it the reverse; everything so fast you can’t remember when you last saw the wallet for the war ration coupons it smelt a little mouldy the last time you found it unsure of how to access its navy blue emptiness a thought vanishes into the air’s crevices you have to rely on your fingers for good tips a beachcomber’s manual will not help, you knew how to reach for the wall... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
Hit Parade Fairy lights on the cover of my latest, what could I have been thinking of? – that forty-seven poems about a wrestling match in foul weather would bring about a fundamental change in my star status – from number forty-seven on the East Anglican hit parade to number one in one lifetime; how absurd, this poem a perfect example of my perennial inability to articulate some universal truth, a sad fact that’s guaranteed to keep me in the ranks of the also-ran until the day I die or decide to find some sensible occupation that might take me... Continue reading
Posted Oct 27, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
Pet The new teacher takes me out: orchestra, revolving restaurant, lesbian bar. I burn my leg on the exhaust of her bike. Next she comes around with a bottle of gin and her admiration for Olivia Newton John. Mortified, I let her do as she pleases. When she moves in with me and my boyfriend, an alcoholic poet, I develop a fever like Villette (which I haven’t read yet). On the bus to school she cries about other girls, jobs she has had to leave in a hurry. She shows me their bewildered letters, I disassociate. When I stop having... Continue reading
Posted Oct 20, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
It’s Time, It’s Time New Year clocks on over fog valley, temperate Tibetans account for contributions. Suburbs struggle and sweat through a summer scented with mumbles and deceptions. Fat detractors and software spruikers expire, the paddockbashers steam from the load. The thin mechanic massages a cigarette: “Could ship ʾer off, up the road – get the Billinudgel Boys to take a look, but a cracked head is a cracked head.” The skyline oils in the mercury ascent, from mosquitoes and humidity exiles fled. The boss does the Copacabana in Caloundra, Jim Wage sneaks off for a lunchtime splash loosens his... Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
Ode to Karl Marx Old father of the horrible bride whose wedding cake has finally collapsed, you spoke the truth that doesn’t set us free- it’s like a lever made of words no one’s learnt to operate. So the machine it once connected to just accelerates & each new rap dance video’s a perfect image of this, bodies going faster and faster, still dancing on the spot. At the moment tho’ this set up works for me, being paid to sit and write & smoke, thumbing through Adorno like New Idea on a cold working day in Ballarat, where adult... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2013 at The Best American Poetry
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Oct 3, 2013