alícia

the night falls like fish

The wind drops violins, my ducks are misaligned,
and the day that you created is winding up
and winding down.
I’ve spread the margarine of time
across the bread and crossed it out.

I need no answers, Alícia,
to questions no-one asked.
Cakely words by Sara Lee
are baking in the oven
and I don’t know who’s to blame.

Continue reading

paperback rider C: retrospective

anything_(detail)_s

Millie has defeated the Dark Solarian and the kilowasp, and there is nothing more to say. Part 1 is here.

~/~

From the rooftop, down and down
the silent page we went. I heard
the hisses of an elsewhere night;
shoreward waves derailed
from their sea tracks
to crash against graffitied cliffs;
and a lackadaisical buzzing
that occupied the plaintive gaps
between my thoughts.

Continue reading

paperback rider B: sheridarp style

is_luminiferous_a_word_s

On the roof of the Dreamwalk Library, a Dark Solarian is draining Librarian Millie’s life force, and a fearsome kilowasp cloud (to the nearest power of ten) is descending. The library employee plans to offer his own life force, if he has any, to save Millie, and no-one cares what the penguins are doing.

In my penultimate moments,
I decided I’d reveal my inner life.

You make me nervous, Millie,
you’re not as librarian as you appear.
You’ve taken me so far from science,
my mind is burning in a consequential fire,
and I’d like a coffee.

Continue reading

paperback rider A: rooftop face time

remembered_by_the_penguins_s

The intrepid binary pair, Librarian Millie and the employee who is searching for mythical Sheridarp, have reached the roof of the Dreamwalk Library. Rather than the urban environment they’d expected, their surroundings are desolate, and an unfriendly cloud of wasps is approaching. Part 1 is here.

Imperturbable Millie ignored the fearsome kilowasp.

I’m thinking that your so-called Sheridarp
is just a symbol, merely naming
what your 
soggy heart is seeking.
It stands for what you’ve never found.

Continue reading

paperback rider 9: metricity and Millie

the_rooftop_c

Millie, the librarian, and the employee who is seeking mythical Sheridarp have been debating whether it can be found on the rooftop of their Dreamwalk Library. Part 1 is here.

Certainty’s uncertain, I’m almost sure.
Lesser libraries might be networked to the greater,
according to the principle of megawasps,
and Dreamwalk might be part of Sonandinho.
So please, dear Millie, my librarian, my master,
might we go together to the rooftop?

Continue reading

paperback rider 8: sheridarp

An unpaid library employee is describing his journey to Sheridarp to Millie, the librarian. He traveled on a moving railway station, passing stationary carriages resembling everyday buildings. Part 1 is here.

The station stopped at various constructs,
and after an elastic interval to night,
I deboarded, wandering in the dark
until a flight of ancient currawongs
dressed in bells
led me to a hazardous occupation
in this very library.

Millie glanced towards a monitor
where windowed morning light
was streaming on the internet.

Continue reading

paperback rider 7: practical railways

mind stations

Millie, the librarian, has been listening to an employee’s story about waiting to catch a train to Sheridarp, and has given him a book on the unknowable. It’s late on a Saturday night, early on the day following, and the characters have inexplicably diverged from their raisons d’être, or would have if they existed. Part 1 is here.

I riffled through “The Unknowable,”
pausing here and there to admire Rorschach
snack and coffee stains.

After several repetitions, I observed that
every page was blank, apart from butterflies
and their suggestions.

Continue reading

paperback rider 6: railway line theory

fear_not_the_waterfowl_s

A library employee has been explaining the theory of transmission lines to Millie, the librarian. Part 1 is here.

Every day was crumpled like a tissue,
starless rooms, vacant eyes,
until I cried out in a supermarket—

Check-out people, heed my warning:
concrete doesn’t show our true reflections,
it hides 
the motors that exhaust the immaterial,
the proton-powered furnaces of darkness,
and don’t trust geese.

Continue reading

paperback rider 5: transmission line theory

borrow_me_s

To keep the librarian Millie happy, a library employee has agreed to do some writing. His chosen topic is transmission line theory. Part 1 is here.

Our life’s within our skin,
squeeze me to my broken bones,
I’m still outside of you,
a part of your exterior,
your shared illusion.

Beyond the gates and through the door,
over my glasses and behind my eyes,
a cozy inner planet spins.

Continue reading

paperback rider 1

the_old_library_s

Before the new days, ancient currawongs
hammering bells awoke me.
The new birds want my moto perpetuo,
my clockwork drive to nonexistence,
to eternal giving up before beginning.

~/~

I was seated at a table in bibliographic
co-ordinates, aligning ping-pong balls
in rows, to start and finish with the first.

Continue reading

return to the lost planet

anesthetic_runes_s

Microscopic particles of time
rain upon our lives.
Paper promises grow brittle,
mapped forgiveness folds, unfolds,
frays and tears along the creases.
Our memories refract through prisms
until the brightest day is lost
in anesthetic runes.

~/~

I heard a motor revving in the carport,
and from my gate,
I watched my Kia Starfish drive away,
with the spindly legged carport
galloping behind.

Continue reading

the safety of the birds

you_are_here_s

I sleep beneath the tire marks
on roads of eggshell bones,
carried by the bubble birds
in their serrated beaks from caves
where rainy pebbles fall,
clattering on my roof, taking fluid forms.

~/~

I was painting my house with Dulux
when a whirlpool wind came calling.
It was fleeing from the west,
from particulate mirages and miracles of water.

Continue reading

seekers of yesterday

water_panes_s

on an evening in the soft infinity.

The sheeting rain outside
is a comfort and a warning
while I solder in a copper tangle:
connections from the future to the past,
with an insulating bypass round the present.

In the stormy world outdoors,
bright cascades of lightning challenge
my pretense, until a sudden surge and roar
redacts the copper to smoke and honey,
and a circuit breaker trips.

Continue reading

clothes hangers

the_first_dawn_s

To find employment and the truth
I read the classifieds in tea leaves—

symbol seeking an equation
clothesline seeking washing
objectified stranger seeking life

I’ll try again tomorrow,
investigate the websites in the clouds,
where my skill
at staring into light and dark
might be less superfluous.

Continue reading

the shadow sun

the tower

Through the window, washes
on a watercolor planet,
rainy autumn shades in spring, and
in the early evening, scattered photon showers
are forecast, a luminous return of light
from the shadow sun.

Indoors there are smaller mysteries,
trailing motes in negative space—
old-fashioned sunlight
leaving lamps and bulbs,
domesticities and peripherals,
drawn out between the curtains
to the shadow sun.

Continue reading

the air chirped by sparrows

chirped air

I’ve breathed the air chirped by sparrows,
critically appraised everything
I didn’t understand,
searched for magica potenta
in urban mysteries, shaded quantum clouds,
on bedroom ceilings, and found echidna quills,
kookaburra beaks, sobriety, all the words
I didn’t want to write.

Three knocks at the door-to-door,
I said I don’t want any, thank you,
not knowing what I didn’t desire.

Continue reading

humans

whether

You humans are all alike, no time no time,
no time is beautiful, before birth and after life.

My pancakes are shallow thoughts
stacked in the kitchen,
she adds a little honey.

I’m late for work at the hardware store,
mostly robots looking for spare parts.
They’re not like her.

Continue reading

should poetry and prose make sense?

aleotoric_evolution_ns

Here are 5 reasons to make your writing incomprehensible—

  • impenetrable words allow the reader to focus on the prosody
  • mystification creates enigmas, unresolved mystery
  • if the meaning is obscured the reader can invent their own
  • writing that doesn’t make sense is more likely to be original, less likely to feel familiar
  • life makes very little sense—to me at least—so why should writing?

Continue reading

paperback rider 4: fictional prevarication

solar_debit_s

Millie, a librarian, has been revealing aspects of her life to an employee. Soon he is going to have to earn the salary that he isn’t being paid. Part 1 is here.

Now we’ve covered everything
I care about, it’s time for you
to write your heart out on these
pillowslips and handkerchiefs.
Use this fabric pen, fill it with a dramatic color,
and let me know your chosen subject,
for shelving later on.

I needed a distraction.
Do you hear the distant screams, the sirens and the like?
Beyond the tinted windows of our bibliographic haven,
passers-by are shouting at the starblown sky,
kneeled in prayer, or searching for 
a mortal remnant
that they might have dropped.

Continue reading

paperback rider 3: the earnest librarian

obedience_school_s

Millie, the librarian, has decided that the library’s newest eternal employee will probably have to do some writing, apart from cleaning the restrooms. Part 1 is here.

Before we ravel the tangles of your
thoughtlessness, I’ll be giving you
the benefit of my interleaved experience.
I may speak in bold occasionally.

about yours truly
I’ve adopted arrogance,
its only limit, epsilon.
I began instructing in my childhood.
My toys were most obedient,
the cat, the least.

Continue reading

myth of the horse king

burnt_dreams_s

From perilous dreams, the horse king
rose, so sure he’d be remembered
in the daylight.

He declared that everything was
indeterminate, unnecessary or incomplete,
and with batteries, many A’s,
he asserted iron-clad existence.

The once and never horse, ambivalence
on a bike, mentioned in a margin
for his bravery, and in a footnote,
impartially decapitated by a jury
of his peers.

Continue reading

school days

always_sorry_s

Classrooms buried underground,
a breath, a cough, a teacher,
where every window was a riddle
and we were mute behind the glass,
where the chord of chords still sounded
from each bell to the last.

I was frail paper with pencilled veins,
a helpless diorama, a divide by zero,
an overflow and underflow,
a distillation of reticence and fear,
listening for the silent voice.

Continue reading