Saturday, September 30, 2006

Night Honey

The night runs her wild honey over me.
Pressed up against my back,
pawed along thigh,

ballooned above me in sweet crustations,
sparkling breath engorged between us.

An amber moon floats sticky cells
where darkness dips and ripples.

We are soft together, she and she,
tasting edges of sugar,
spinning our trihedral forms to floss -
filaments of night and light.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

some interesting submission calls on this page

Bugger! Why won't my links work on this blog? Sorry guys, you'll have to copy and paste it ... sigh

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

los enamorados

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Janet Frame

'The Starting Point is Myth'

Born in Dunedin in 1924, the third of five children, Frame grew up in an eccentric railway family in the small towns of Otago Province. Her Oamaru childhood was marred by poverty, illness and tragedy (two of her sisters drowned in separate incidents). It was nonetheless remarkable for a close, imaginatively intense home-life where "words were revered as the instruments of magic." After being misdiagnosed with schizophrenia as a young woman in her twenties, over a period of more than eight years she endured over 200 electric shock treatments. She was infamously saved from a lobotomy in 1951 when her debut collection of stories, The Lagoon, won the Hubert Church Memorial Award.

The agenda for her prose, wrestling with the dual/jewel (to borrow a typical Frame word-play) nature of 'truth' entangled in the medium of its expression, is laid out the famous opening lines of To the Is-land:

"From the first place of liquid darkness, within the second place of air and light, I set down the following record with its mixture of fact and truths and memories of truths and its direction toward the Third Place, where the starting point is myth."

Two poems:


Wayward as dust when the wind blows around corners
into blind eyes; petrifying as stone
that sinks the heart of thistledown.
Grave as gravity denied
supremacy in outer space,
tall metaphor, explain me,
describe my shape.

from The Pocket Mirror


"The sun is all love and murder, judgement,
the perpetual raid of conscience,
paratrooping light which opens
like a snow-blossom
in the downward drift of death.
Wherever I turn -
the golden cymbals of judgement,
the summoning of the torturers of light."

from Scented Gardens for the Blind

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The Gauntlet of Winter's Moon

Wrapped in a mantle of snowflakes
I seek my way through the pines.

I dare to be alone, although I shiver
at every stroke of wind to my cheek.

I will never join a host of vapid maidens
leaning their goosenecks towards the sun.

Pride may be my downfall, but whoever wants me
must forsake all others and seek only me

if he would share the warmth
beneath my glistening coverlet.

The moon bestows light
only in a clearing.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

When I Was a Child I Believed in Magic Toadstools

My head is full
of Janet's poems,

my paper is filling with red ink
and gold finch eyes,

and the guy in the pub still sits
in his corner
on his synthetic tiger fur stool
bought especially for him,
since he's always there.

Like a toad he sits
and guzzles Speights,
in a timely fashion,
with genteel finger.

If you talk to him
he'll tell you your fortune,
and the dark places of your heart -
according to him -
embowelled in his wallow of Speights.

But I am in the unblinking
goldfinch eye, and traced
through these red scratchings on paper
are my heart's places,

impervious to any subtle residue of magic
toadstools may have.

There Are No Directions

There are things you should know
about my house -
that it rises in light,
shifts and breathes,
as do I.

That the castle is an aspect
drawn from my mind
as fine as you would find anywhere.

There are no pathways leading here,
you must be guided by my scout, the Raven.

Don't be afraid of what you don't understand,
for what is there to know
about a flower, or the sky?

They simply are - as I am -
as we are -
and this house

hovers in the icy night of deserts
and shimmers on the steps of dawn,
drags anchor lines through my chest,
and sails off on exploratory ventures
from all four corners.

The Earthworm

I am the culmination
of everything I have ever been:
fireball of energy,
lightning of the cosmos,
mirror of Jehovah.

Lying just beneath the snow
is the palm of land
that only wind and water know.

Carved, etched, embroidered, embellished,
the sarcophagus of elements on which I walk
yet leave no indelible impression.

But there is grace in every utterance.
Thought, idea, spoken word,
recorded on a page or disc,
continue on, as evidence I existed
with my bucketful of earth and worms.