s n a p s h o t s   1 17

July 20, 2005

Nothing Is Old

Nothing is old.
Nothing is new.
Nothing is.
Is is not
when nothing is.

Is hides
when is is not,
becomes circumlocutory,
becomes becomes
round and round.
It circumvents
and in hiding
sings a song.

Ah, the notes.
Sing them.

Nought nought.

Harriet Zinnes


green-headed haze
my taxi guy squares out
the suburb hop

winter removes some definition
like a memory
of green-headed hills
everlasting trees
(though they're going)
and ever rolling clay roofs

(a century of wide beige song
the lies of the commonwealth)

I ask him 'can we squeeze past this'
but he takes a new turn
past peak hour glue
I must remember that move

amongst it all
someone finds a new twist
through the state's
morning gridlocks

Jill Jones
Sydney 8.45am, Wednesday 20 July 2005


In the Dark

The dark bedroom is shuddering with
the inwardly uttered, outwardly
unspoken words of my dream

now over, already unidentifiable,
still drenched with pain and fear.

Compose yourself, old man -
the dark air will clear,

the past sink back. Stop
trying to see, trying to hear.

Max Richards
North Balwyn, Melbourne

Wednesday 20 July 2005


Walking home from my mechanic's workshop
105 minutes in the warming winter sun
banana and mandarine for breakfast
bottle of water 'with a squeeze of lemon'

so many houses I've never seen
so much individual lacework
newly painted on verandahs
mothers pushing prams walking toddlers
old men with scarves tight
around their necks

by the Phoenix Language Academy
clusters of funloving Asian students
racing across against the traffic

the Redemptorist Monastery
throws a long shadow
next door African Funk Dancing
(I imagine their cassocks
whirling in a Dervish dance)

smells of blood'n'bone from
well-clipped gardens

waft of cooking from Han's Cafe

surly girl at the supermarket
slams my water drink through
disparagingly (huh, only one item)

two ducks waddle up to see me
from the neighbourhood lake
one shits the other
walks in it

my blood pumping my eyes clear

this afternoon 3.15 pm
I'll walk back again

Andrew Burke
Mt Lawley
noon 20 July 2005



she had
kissed her frog
and he had
turned into
a handsome
dashing prince
she later on
as her mother
had warned
rather regretted
giving birth
to tadpoles.




Cameras don't get the smell of place.

I knew

a tree, which, at a time of year, opened

with a key of scent long passages of memory,

another side of Lethe, where the backward

immortality of thought's origin became

tangible in its roots' narrowing recesses

smiles and skin aroma

its warmth

passed on

Somewhere in April light, my mother cooks,

a saucepan of hot water bubbling round

vegetables, she in this room, sustained here

by recollection of the tang of

liquid she puts on her hair to make it shine;

though now of course others move and live there,

layered, apart from her, discrete animation.

Now he who makes this recalls, in low fields,

mountain roads he flows along on intermittent

rills of lavender flooding his life

Lawrence Upton

[early morning, Leswidden, West Penwith]



for wanting to raise a finger,
interrupt, and say
quite clearly and unmistakeably,

"[Spoiler] dies at the end",

to a group
of American students discussing
the latest Harry Potter, which
they are still reading, on the bus.

Half not,
for not doing so.

Dominic Fox


peas and potato
at midnight I'm edgy
and scratchy rain
has been through and
night whistles to itself

I am wide-eyed awake
staring at the screen
expecting it to
tell me something
in its own tongue

something is brewing
something is 'up'
something is coming
'around that corner
or whistling down the river

come on, deliver -
to me' I am
crowding in on me
when I'm like this
it's probably a poem
or some other misfit

a lame secular angel
intensely looking
for attention
and worth every minute of it
and worth every
minute of it

Andrew Burke
Mt Lawley
midnight & shortly thereafter
20 july 2005



After ‘I wake and feel the fell of dark, not day’

Gall and heartburn.
Pass on the Gelusil and Prilosec.
Hopkins must've snuck under
the Irish Jebbie radar,
no Freudian shrink to test the aspirant,
they took instead a certified nutcase
insomniac, depressive, squeezed gratitude
glimpsed in only two words at the end: "but worse."
But Worse? Jesus Christ (whom you adored),
Gerry, clunky, clunky, is that how
you taught Greek grammar and translation?
"Young men, translate as though Homer was not blind
but stuttered like an Enfield"
no, not your finest moment,
no "Christ, come quickly!" or meditation
on humility itself, Alphonsus Rodriguez
at the door: but here just "last night
sucked but it could have been worse,
I get my morning parole from Hell."
Not gorgeous but your truest, your truth
truth torn from soaked sheets.

Kenneth Wolman


I will not speak of it
though sun speckle the ivy
with yellow light
and foxgloves sway
in the breeze.

I will be silent
through heat and stunning
slices of rain; through
the river's decline
to its grey-pebbled bed.

Though the air
turn orange and thick
with fire, I will say
nothing. I drift like a ghost
through my own life.

~ SB


My Mother, 89, Observes a Particular Rose:

I continue to do little creative writing exercises

with my Mom. One evening, recently, I cut some

white and pink roses from the garden - one that she

no longer is able to attend and care for anymore.

I placed the flowers in an alabaster vase

and put them on the coffee table in front of the couch

where she routinely sits after dinner. I take my journal

and pen and ask her to tell me what she can say

about what is going inside one of the roses. Without

question, after concentrating her gaze for a moment,

she starts:

"Before one looks into the heart of a Rose

One sees a very delicate pink, eager to come forth

To come out in public. But, as the days go by

It becomes much larger, almost arrogant.

A central color is precise and ready

To take the Rose on many an experience:

Wouldn't you like to go further in studying

This magnificent piece of budding life -

Now really of much broader experience?"

Similar to an earlier piece, I continue

to find it astonishing the way my Mom may

invite one to look at and value her life without

being at all conscious she may be doing so:

Before the final window of disappearance.

I don't know why that last line came to me. But it seems

important - whether she live one more year or five -

to value the profile and fullness of what can still be given.

And that we, too, as we age, be given the same gift

which is just, perhaps, another way of saying

"Go and be among elders, too."

Stephen Vincent


On Technology and Men:
One Woman to Another at Noe Valley Grill & Bar,
San Francisco:

"Shows up and gives me an iPod.
This to buy my love.
It works.
I don't know how to fill it up.
Move my whole library ?
Import what?
Do you use it as your Main Library?
I'm a total pirate.
I download everything:
Shakespeare with this great scholar.
I downloaded Howard Zinn
This great historian.
He's so simple and so straight forward.
I got Windows. I got Real Player.
I think what's happening
Is that I am over the top
I need someone to help me.
I'm on my vacation.
I need the 'tubes'."


"I like to have a partner
Who's a real partner
Where you don't have
Those spiders around
The edges of your consciousness."

All in a day's work!

Stephen Vincent


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