Friday, April 29, 2011


(based on suggestions from @pinknantucket, @_camer0n, @timsterne, @marklawrence, @TheEndeavour, @slimejam, @realnixwilliams, @snazzydee)

Don’t want to give the wrong impression

about monarchs. They’re no butterflies.

He’s not a mis-heard lyric and

she’s not an ill-placed homophone.

No one mistakes Groban for Mr Hankie

in the after-dinner set list.

Confirm the banquet menu.

Kipfler or kestrel or King Edward?

Mini Yorkshires or cottage pie?

Anyone who says “Let them eat Kate”

will find themselves with takeway noodles

quicksmart. Zero tolerance pho puns.

The date looms like an oversized tiara.

Important issues like pet names –

Pickle and Honey puff?

Big Willie and Babykins?

Don’t see any votes for Squidgy.

Funny thing, that. Discuss.

Even if I was still fourteen

You wouldn’t see a royal poster

gracing the paint adjacent to

my Take That wall. Mark Owen’s

come-hither tattoo was enough of a

fantasy for this princess, sweetheart.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from eight peeps:

  • @pinknantucket: “pickle and honey puff”
  • @_camer0n: “Lady Mondegreen and Mrs Malaprop” (apologies to Prince William for making him into a lady)
  • @timsterne: “Monarchs!”
  • @marklawrence: “kipfler potatoes. And pho.”
  • @TheEndeavour: “confirmation, tiaras!”
  • @slimejam: “Romance misconstrued. As defecation.”
  • @realnixwilliams: “MY POSTER OF TAKE THAT FROM THE CD I HAD WHEN I WAS A TEENAGER, literally the only band poster I had on my wall back then!”
  • @snazzydee: “Perhaps ‘come-hither’ could make an appearance”

Obviously I had to make it about the Royal Wedding. Right? No choice. *cough*

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Dromaius novaehollandiae (the emu)

(based on suggestions from @msmisrule, @_boobook_, @_camer0n, @hleighthree)

Emus tap staccato tables,

yoink a snag or two off

forty cent fizzing grills.

Meat spiked from bread,

white pinwheel corners nicked

from slim picnickings.

Avoid mock turkey with

thin fluorescent pickles,

stick to sauce sangers.

Swift as hungry wet cats,

big brown birds skip rapport.

Nip past oncoming droplets

with necks held ahead,

feathered devils. No one

says their nonsense names

or invokes thieving beaks.

No one calls them William:

they appear anyway.

Artless flightless antichrists

jab noodle necks across

a lunch spread surrealists

would puff up with pride.

Soggy triangles droop,

melted mealy timepieces.

Long past rain o’clock

children scream; sausageless.

Parents shoo the prehistoric.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from four peeps:

  • @msmisrule: “rain, cats, lunch”
  • @_camer0n: “cut-up nonsense dada Ftumch”
  • @_boobook_ : “tapping”
  • @hleighthree: “thin pickles”

Somehow, all of this made me think of emus and how they steal your food at picnics. The buggers. I've lost sausages right out of the bread in my hand.

Also, sauce sandwiches! Best barbeque food ever.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


(based on suggestions from @timsterne, @pinknantucket, @notcharming, @slimejam, @dogpossum, @realnixwilliams, @marklawrence, @_camer0n)

Hermes 3000 inherited from a racehorse

named “Light Fingers”, he bought that

light green machine by a nose.

Might have been lost to hard rubbish

instead it was won from mum and adored.

My own fingers small, tipped in bandaids

apostles to the apostrophe

so they weren't cut like keys.

Not quite old enough

to be eight.

Apple IIE wanted to know where

Carmen Sandiego was.

CrimeNet insisted flags of

Reykjavik, Kigali and Bamako.

were playground life skills.

Broderbund crowns made space

for my big head, covert

covertext like Leia’s holograms.

Could’ve hidden behind my age

at thirteen.

Brother AX-10 sold

to Brethren girls en masse.

Long hair, long skirts, they had

purpose for electric typewriters.

Headbands thrilled back

interrobangs and questioned the end

of uni holidays. Their clothes were

my clothes, sorted and recycled.

“You’re all there to study, aren’t you?”

Nineteen in college I lied

said yes.

Thinkpad wasn’t really for keeps.

“Borrowed” on permanent basis

like a stenographed cup of sugar

Never really going to give back.

“portable”, “lightweight”, “mine”:

end ambivalent airquotes.

Bluescreen mid-diploma.

Work all day, evening class, weekend

assignment, sleepwalk at twilight.

Swapped all time for a library

at twenty-six.

iPhone 3 fused to my hand.

Every bar and café with ready

power point mapped

in my head. Charger carried long

wind it down to ‘dismiss’ twice a day.

No sharp keys to slip between

no small ding, no red ribbon lifting

the carriage. No holes pepper the page

where ‘o’ punches too hard.

Thirty years old I miss

my green typewriter.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from

  • @timsterne: "holograms"
  • @notcharming: "interrobang"
  • @pinknantucket: "Superceded technology - the typewriter, the reel-to-reel, the minidisc..."
  • @slimejam: "Making space. Hard rubbish."
  • @dogposssum: “end of a holiday?”
  • @realnixwilliams: “sorting out what you’re able to recycle?”
  • @marklawrence: “ ‘borrowing’ a cup of sugar from a neighbour. As if we’re ever going to give it back. And how come we don’t do it any more?”
  • @_camer0n: “apostrophe apostles, air-quote ambivalence (Chapter 8)”

I learned to touch-type before I learned to write, mainly because I was too impatient and wanted to write stories NOW. So Mum taught me. She had a green Hermes typewriter that was bought for her in 1966 when my grandfather had a win on a horse appropriately named 'Light Fingers'. My fingers were small enough that they slipped between the keys and got little cuts on them, so I was often bandaided up in advance, ready to type.

Sliding my fingers around on the screen of the iPhone I have now made me remember that typewriter, and all the writing-machines I've battled in between. I kind of miss their familiar noise, eccentricity and tactile nature. I even miss the bandaids.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


(based on suggestions from @realnixwilliams, @_boobook_ and @skippy_2)

Filigree of frost and mould on windows

prickles out a ream of stars

spiral galaxies press against

glass for private screening.

Pretend they’re far away, stream

orbital arms from years ago

long-forgotten halos of dust.

Couple of hours til reminders beep

breakfast orders grind jam into carpet

greasy tiles demand elbows and sugar soap.

Grey light will rise responsibly,

like a shiny straightened paperclip

pierce a hole in the morning

restore tired factory settings.

But not yet. Heater glows orange

wordless purring companion.

On a clear day, who needs forever?

Grimy stars three feet away

are as far as I need to see.

Better housekeepers never know these

impossible squalid diamonds.


Today’s poem is based on suggestions from three peeps:

  • @realnixwilliams: “Glimpses of the milky way on a clear night”
  • @_boobook_: “jam”
  • @skippy_2: “one shiny straightened paperclip”

I really should clean the windows one day, but it’s a job that never quite gets done, due to more immediate requirements (clean clothes, meals, empty nappy bins, day job etc). On these increasingly chilly mornings, condensation clusters around the mould on the window panes. Once dawn breaks, it looks wet and filthy. Before dawn, it reflects the outside lights and looks like a belt of stars stretching across the glass. If I was more hygienic, I’d never get to see that.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Three possums

(based on suggestions from @cochineal, @jellyjellyfish and @margolanagan)

The largest of the possums is

a common one. She comes

from the Greek for ‘furry tailed’

and the Latin for ‘little fox’

and you’ve probably seen her

running along your back fence

in the dark or kicking back in

the Carlton Gardens.

She falls asleep easily and

sometimes comes a cropper

if the branch is unsteady.

She can hold the world in a hug.

The most medium of the possums

is curly and quiet in his eyes

and he smiles like an upside

down cat. He comes

from the Latin for ‘pilgrim’

but you will only see him

calm as a shrine to the night.

His tail curves like a coil of

woodsmoke, white at the tip

as a conductor’s baton

a perfect ferrule for pairing

journeys with songs.

The smallest of the possums

is outlined in kohl and walks

the tops of trees like a red carpet

she was born to make flowers

into stardom and eats

her fill of honey without breaking

the blossom. She comes

from the Latin for ‘neat’

and has a lot surface area

that can lose heat quickly.

Larger possums hold her

keep each other warm.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from three peeps:

  • @cochineal: “awards ceremonies”
  • @jellyjellyfish: “tall possums”
  • @margolanagan: “I think you should include three kinds of marsupial.”

The largest Australian possum is the Common Brushtail Possum. They're the ones you see everywhere, and (I discovered one evening after a movie) they like popcorn. Well, the ones in the Carlton Gardens do.

A mid-size Australian possum is the Common Ringtail Possum. They have long, prehensile white-tipped tails that remind me of conducting batons. I think they would make good mixtapes.

The world's smallest possum is the Tasmanian Pygmy Possum. It's the one in the picture, and it's about the size of a mouse. They're omnivorous, and when they eat pollen, they don't destroy the flower in the process. Aren't they lovely?

Sunday, April 24, 2011

What I want

(based on a suggestion from @snazzydee and @robcorr)

The space between here and home is

as long as you can think.

What I say when I’m tired

or I can’t think or my hands hurt

Over and over I whispered it

in the delivery room though

I thought I was yelling

I want to go home

The space between here and home is

waiting in an airport with a 2 year old

endless as a repeated word.

Tarmac riddles out an unwound

cassette tape caught in the headlights.

I’ve been pretending all weekend

punching Braille into the wall

I want to go home

The space between here and home is

as bright as a supermarket aisle

glittered with chocolate when

all you want is bread and milk.

Sometimes I wake up and

don’t know where I am. Sometimes

I even say it when I’m home

I want to go home


Today's poem is based on a suggestion from two peeps (as I forgot to ask for suggestions until 4am and Snaz, being in another timezone, was thankfully awake, then at 6am so was @robcorr):

  • @snazzydee: “distance”
  • @robcorr: "Airports, because that's where I'm sitting now."

I often say "I want to go home" as a kind of mantra, when I'm upset or tired birth. (Apparently I was saying it really softly over and over when I was in labour, though I thought I was shouting).

Sometimes home seems so far away, even when I'm sitting on my own couch in my own lounge room. Sometimes I can't quite feel at home anywhere, or I know where home is but I can't get there. Then there are times when I do feel 'at home', whatever it is in that moment, and it's like an easy joy.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Aegrescit medendo (the cure is worse than the disease)

(based on suggestions from @margolanagan, @realnixwilliams, @greenspace01)

Mourning is no rollercoaster.

A flat, straight road towards

a flat horizon. Vanishing point

does not curve with tears or songs.

If there was a cure for kindness

I’d dose up everyone I know.

Morning is no miracle.

Sun is a cheap chocolate coin

Floury and greasy; a waste of calories.

Death tastes like low cocoa mass.

If there was a cure for grief,

I’d choose the blue pill.

Mourning is no sprint to the finish.

Take foot, place in front of other foot.

The thought of it is enough:

even a cheap sun gleams precious.

If there was a cure for fear

I’d pick chocolate over snake oil.

Morning is no uncommon birth.

Unpeeled gold foil coins prompt

surprised smiles at clichéd lining.

Kids like cheap chocolate.

If there was a cure for their pleasure

I’d criminalise it and flush the drugs.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from three peeps:

  • @margolanagan: “I think there definitely should be some gold foil in there somewhere.”
  • @realnixwilliams: “walking along long, straight roads towards a flat horizon.”
  • @greenspace01: “Death, rebirth, and chocolate as an antidote to fear”

I was talking to a friend recently about whether if there was a cure for grief, if you could skip the whole thing, would you take the pill? Or is it a necessary process? The blue pill in the Matrix is the one that keeps you in blissful ignorance. I'm a bit ambivalent, I have to admit. I think I'd probably take the pill. Or maybe - yes well, let's just say I'm undecided.

Anyway, this poem reflects my mixed emotions about feeling vs. not feeling, about how numbing pain usually results in numbing pleasure as well.

And how sucky it is that the cliche is true: time really is the only moderator of grief. Stupid cliches.

Friday, April 22, 2011

First night

(based on suggestions from @awurster, @msmaddiep, @ernmalleyscat, @realnixwilliams, @twitofalili, @spikelynch)

Night midwives glide, smooth sharks

along carpeted corridors. Soft light

overheats darkness. Someone’s baby

is always grinting. Nurses are acrobats,

swift with infants, flip them from

hand to hand like a child’s clapping game.

Rhythm of newborns is in their fingers where

I am just transcribing spots from a leopard.

A book about babies teaches as much about

that tiny neck as a cookbook knows

what sponge cake tastes like. A child

is not a diagram of reflexes.

Everyone trampolines in at afternoon.

It is my night time, I have been awake for days.

My grandmother has six children, advises

everything inadvisable. Her technology of

colic and bland food has been superseded.

We don’t give spoonfuls of water any more.

Midwives relieve me of your squalling

head. I am as glad and guilty as Catholic steak

on Good Friday. Soon they bring back your limbs

that I made, your furry arms I will fill out,

milk the hours of dark feeding but right now

all I can think is what have I done.

I sing you what my mother sang, I call up

Alexander Beetle and Gone the Rainbow.

Still spotted with my blood like a ladybeetle

you are so, so new. No one is more amazed.

In the shower alone, I think you have disappeared.

In the shower alone, I think I have disappeared.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from six peeps:

  • @awurster: ” sponge cakes AND trampolines”
  • @msmaddiep: “Sharks? Always sharks.”
  • @ernmalleyscat: “shower thoughts”
  • @realnixwilliams: “how about trampolines and handclapping rhymes? (heard kids doing these today - so slightly different to the ones i learnt!)”
  • @twitofalili: “Alexander beetle! And eating fish on Good Friday cause you're staying with Catholics.”
  • @spikelynch: “how about nanatechnology (things that grandmothers excel in)”

The first night with a newborn is a surreal experience. I didn't even know how to pick him up, let alone feed him or change his nappy. How do I know if he's hungry? Should I wake him up? Every single movement was foreign to me, and I'd been awake for around 36 hours, and had an epidural, and everything was so, so strange. I knew I was supposed to love this new creature, but as the poem says, all I could think was 'what have I done'.

I did love him eventually, you'll be pleased to hear.

The photo is of Luka about 2 hrs after he was born, wrapped up next to me when we were alone in the delivery room.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

She is prettier than you, master

(based on suggestions from @sulphura and @facelikethunder)

No leopard print, but lots of overalls and

knitwear and an awful lot of my childhood

spent following her following a long scarf

and a big brown hat. I used to go travelling

through space and time in a phone box.

Soon there was less of this ‘yes doctor no doctor’

less of this bowing to the ichor pure business.

Soon there was my Sarah Jane. Get you, tiger girl.

Myths, legends, fairytales. I saw the furtherest

eldritch reaches of the galaxy before bedtime

I was part of the entourage (though it’s possible

I wasn’t their girl in Havana, more likely

I was the tin dog). Then you dropped me back

on earth in my lounge room as theme music

warped my thoughts. How could anything compare?

Everything ends but you came back

every week with new intergalactic battles.

You know what the most difficult thing was?

Coping with what happens next

or what doesn’t happen next.

The credits always roll, the universe has

to move forward. I always had

to go to bed and grow up at some point.

Everything has its time. Whether it’s a

world, or a relationship, or being a kid.

Every story has its inspiration

they define us as much as happiness or love.

Some things are worth getting

your heart broken for.

I need to hear you say it:

there’s nothing ‘only’ about being a girl.

Greetings, mistress.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from two peeps:

  • @sulphura: "Can we have a tribute to Sarah Jane?"
  • @facelikethunder: "Earlier in the day I thought of suggesting the words 'eldritch' and 'ichor'. Use them if you think they'd be appropriate."

Elisabeth Sladen played Doctor Who's companion Sarah Jane Smith in the 70s, some later specials, and again in the new series. She died yesterday aged only 63. She was a big part of a lot of our childhoods - I especially associate her with the Tom Baker years of Doctor Who (he's my favourite original series Doctor). Elisabeth was a lot of people's favourite companion. She was just pretty much kinda wonderful.

Today's poem includes a lot of Sarah Jane quotes (mostly from the new series, but a couple from the original). The title of the poem and final line are quotes from K9.

Vale Elisabeth.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Chatons feuilles

(based on suggestions from @notcharming and @Quadelle)

Dry leaves are kittens

scattered on stiff legs

wide as a finger.

Snapped from the tree

like a tiny neck

they bounce, pretend

the wind is a monster.

Ruffle in the shape

of a pronged hand

Small cats wave triangle

tails from the trees.

Fat round seed bellies

droop low, sleepy and

tight with breakfast.

Flashes in autumn’s eye

Warning: soon it will


with needle twig claws

make us giggle at this

drama of what is only

leaping from a branch.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from two peeps:

  • @notcharming: "KITTENS"
  • @Quadelle: "How about autumn?"

Today's poem is quite simple, an imagistic attempt at turning autumn leaves into kittens. Not exactly anthropomorphising...cathropomorphising? You know when kittens get a wild look in their eyes and then boing around with their little legs all splayed out and stiffened? That bit. Cracks me up.

Chatons feuilles is French for 'leaf kittens', because everything sounds better in French. Until you try to do the 'r', that is.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


(based on suggestions from @jellyjellyfish, @snazzydee, @facelikethunder, @realnixwilliams, @mlledelicieuse, @pinknantucket, @matchtrick, @ernmalleyscat, @greenspace01)

Take the number two and clonk back a couple of hundred years.

We’ve got time, there are infinite decimal places between Zeno

and the first bus. Large numbers of glottal bus stops but few

fricatives in the language of public transport. Trains have the most,

because of the tunnels. Force air oosh along an articulated tube.

The vehicle bumps to a stop with a whish of air brakes.

I wish, not for the first time, that my carriage was a horse

as high as a woolly mammoth or the Empire State Building

with clopped hooves and a tall dog’s mane. A beast you could burden.

A Clydesdale I could ride in a crisp bonnet and roffling petticoats.

I’ve climbed the shape of horses in the clouds and it’s like

looking up a spiral aircase from below. It alters perception:

resonants appear as vowels and consonants parody themselves

like Mr Ed with peanut butter umbling on his gums.

The flank of a horse is the most beautiful shining nimbus.

Draw back on the accelerator, Mr Driver, we’re in no

tearing paper hurry. There’s time to check references,

amend hoof-notes before driving oodly exhaust clouds

forward in (Harvard 2010, p. 1) to where cars go in Chicago[1]

to the flow of rivers under the Cambridge[2].

Just before the folding doors close I light-bulb a reply

to that thing you said weeks ago about food and riding.

If horses were courses then beggars would fry

them up crispy. Belated humour on the steps of a bus

is one sole note smiling against the timetable.

Tyres emboss a superscript number on the bitumen.

We bang along the same old paths, veer below the lines.

But sometimes we footnote something really important

(like the love in the eye of a horse or the

muffling long hair of an Afghan as it runs).


Today's poem is based on suggestions from nine peeps:

@greenspace01: "woolly mammoths"

@ernmalleyscat: “Ok either an Old Norse epic or lots of onomatopoeia”

@matchtrick: @annaryanpunch @pinknantucket “Infinitessimals!”
@pinknantucket: “hmm ok…how about the infinity that exists between one and two”

@mlledelicieuse: “unless you’ve done it before, the shapes made by clouds”

@realnixwilliams: “the benefits and drawbacks of Harvard, Chicago, and Cambridge styles of referencing”

@facelikethunder: “Proto-Indo-European”

@snazzydee: “L’esprit de l’escalier”


One of my high school friends always said I looked like an Afghan hound, especially when I ran (long straight hair, centre parting, very tall). This seemed somehow right to me, and still does (even though I have a side part now). I think they are my patronus.

I've discovered I'm not a natural at onomatopoeia, which is odd because sometimes I go through periods where I experience sounds as words. It's hard to explain - if I hear someone clap their hands, the noise suddenly spells a word in my head.

I always want words to throw up visuals rather than sounds. But I've had a go, even though it meant inventing some words.

[1] Illinois, Which is Cleaner, and Does Not Disrupt the Eye (Chicago: Run Bus Run Press, 2011), 2.

[2] East Anglia, Which is Basically the Same Except With Less Parentheses, Cambridge, England, Let Them Run On Time Publications, 2012, p. 3.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Trilogy (after Berlioz)

(based on suggestions from @_camer0n, @matchtrick, @alphabetsoupmag, @ernmalleyscat)

Just before he dies, a thought of his

beloved rings out like a reminder.

He imagines her three times.

She is tied to a third that repeats

and expands like the ivory still grew.

He cannot span his knuckles to play her.

Her motif is the ideal marriage of notes

Wedded to his mind until it fills every

brain cell; she is his fixed refrain.

He cannot escape this fine idea.

A pale, staring man surfaces in the artist,

does not blink at betrayal's fanfare.

He sees her dancing with the witches.

Dosed up with clarinets, he waits

A trilogy of poppies bloom in his eyes.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from four peeps:

  • @_camer0n: "there is a brief, nostalgic recollection of the idée fixe in a solo clarinet"
  • @matchtrick: "The tritone. IF YOU DARE."
  • @alphabetsoupmag: "fanfare"
  • @ernmalleyscat: "How about a poem about pale staring men?"

After Cam's suggestion I was all "to the Googles!" and found it in the wikipedia article about Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique. The symphony 'tells the story of "an artist gifted with a lively imagination" who has "poisoned himself with opium" in the "depths of despair" because of "hopeless love." '

"The author imagines that a young vibrant musician, afflicted by the sickness of spirit which a famous writer has called the wave of passions [la vague des passions], sees for the first time a woman who unites all the charms of the ideal person his imagination was dreaming of, and falls desperately in love with her. By a strange anomaly, the beloved image never presents itself to the artist’s mind without being associated with a musical idea".

I wrote today's poem after reading through the story in the Symphonie Fantastique, but kind of combined Berlioz's double idée fixe with @matchtrick's 'tritone' suggestion.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Ginger ninjas

(based on suggestions from @tiggyjohnson, @sulphura, @dogpossum)

You can’t catch gingerbread men like a common cold.

You’re like, running for the door. It’s okay, you can go.

Biscuit feet walk through walls and nobody notices,

legs still as scratching posts before motionless

sliding glass. Not entirely unlike a ninja.

Twenty years I’ve been fighting demons.

Nancy Ninja boys come in, six months later

the demons are pissing themselves with fear.

These breaden creatures are so cookie-cutting edge

they go out of date every three hours.

They come from a journey through time and space.

Parallel world; it’s like a gingerbread house.

All those temptations calling: ‘eat me’. The buttons!

Not the gumdrop buttons! I’m a bit confused,

who’s the bad guy here? Bread or demons?

Nothing’s worse than a ninja – they’re masters

of every style of combat. When they get drunk

they remember every burger down to the sauce,

every late night spent eating bread from a bag,

dipping it in anything runnier than bread.

You know what gets me? Hansel and Gretel

run home to tell everyone and turn peaceful communities

into vigilantes. Witches get burned. I don’t know about you

but I’m gonna go trade my cow for some beans.

No one else is seeing the funny here.

What was she gonna do, float a pencil at them?

Perhaps the ninjas need a new courier project,

they could bring the demons to us, drag them

here by their high pale cheekbones.

It could unnumb us to invite them over the threshold.

Twenty years of ginger ninjas line up at our door.

They’re delivered every three hours, we can’t ignore

the glossy pile-up of iced-on eyes, it’s everything there is.

Let them in and fairy tales are real. This hurts so much.

It's real, and sometimes it fucking hurts, but it's sort of all we have.


Today’s poem is based on suggestions from three peeps:

  • @dogpossum: "drunken, misremembered misadventures"
  • @sulphura: "ninjabread men"
  • @tiggyjohnson: "jeans=cat scratching pole"

I’m not sure how, but today’s poem evolved into a bit of a mashup of lines from Garden State, Scrubs, Buffy, The Mighty Boosh, Doctor Who, Black Books and Shrek. Here’s the stats of where the bits and pieces fit in:

  • 1st stanza: Line 2 – Garden State, line 5 - Scrubs
  • 2nd stanza: Lines 1-3 - Buffy, lines 4-5 - The Mighty Boosh
  • 3rd stanza: Line 1 - The Mighty Boosh, lines 2-3 - Doctor Who, line 3-4 - Shrek
  • 4th stanza: Line 1-2 - Scrubs, lines 4-5 - Dylan Moran
  • 5th stanza: Lines 1-5 – Buffy
  • 6th stanza: Line 1 – Buffy
  • 7th stanza: Line 2 – Mighty Boosh, line 3-5 - Garden State, line 4 – Buffy

And apparently ninjabread men are really metaphors in disguise. Tasty, tasty metaphors.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Six different numbers

(based on suggestions from @matchtrick, @_boobook_, @marklawrence, @robcorr and @suz_la)

Let me tell you about scales: they are relative to nothing.

In thirty years I had four pairs of bathroom,

two pairs of kitchen. None of the six brought serenity.

The first were orange and round, arrived by serendipity.

Engorged with flour and chocolate chips, they didn’t know

about kilograms, only told stories in ounces.

The second were white and flat. Their serrated red needle

was as unreliable as a taxi driver – I could wind them back

or forward like daylight savings. Didn’t trust them.

The third were red and digital. Their con was substantial,

they told me less than I needed to know. I stole them legally,

had them so long they turned grey with envy of my feet.

The fourth were three points accurate. Told it like it was.

I fused their decimal places to my image like

the holy trinity and was suddenly scaled up.

The fifth were tall, and mediated serotonin in my kitchen.

Sorting butter from flour was my dose of serapax,

They weighed innocuous things like eBay parcels.

The sixth were glass and cool like death. They were my most

hidden platform. I stepped up like the biggest secret

Que sera, sera. Sometimes I didn’t even look at the number.


Today’s poem is based on suggestions from five peeps:

  • @matchtrick: “serenity serendipity serration serotonin serapax que sera sera
  • @_boobook_: “scales”
  • @marklawrence: "'engorged'. As in the Merri Creek was engorged the other morning."
  • @robcorr: “Perhaps "consubstantial", given the current controversy?
  • @suz_la: “shit cab drivers that think they're good then argue with you that they're good when they're not and then go the wrong way. not that I'm currently experiencing that or anything.

'Consubstatial' means 'of one and the same substance, essence or nature', and so obviously has a Latin christian history surrounding it. Scales are about as close as I come to religion.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Black and white

based on suggestions from @realnixwilliams, @snazzydee, @sorrel_smith (who is responsible for the AAAAAAetc rhyme scheme), @slimejam, @ernmalleyscat, @kirsty_I

He was overlooked because he was black and white.

His eyes looked stuck-on, for buttoning, not sight.

Breedless; no exotic mountain fur or purple pastel highlight

He was comfortable on one human palm; embodied slight.

“He’s got a funny head,” you said, forthright.

“Is that mange? Is that a flea? Is that a bite?”

I liked his funny head, his spots of blight

How he’d not be left uncuddled without fight.

Near shelter, our car stopped short at one green light

would not be revived. We moved it quite

out of traffic, grabbed cat carrier, took flight.

Trudged the streets of Carlton, bemoaned our plight.

Each landmark built the kitten’s fur: dark and bright

Interiors screamed exhibition colours built on might

Make him seem stark, blessed only with the opposite

of golden flamed cerise, seemed to ignite.

At last at home, he leapt out of the cage despite

new landscape. Skittered chairs and danced the rite

of Spring. Then hauled up lapwards and sat tight.

Perfect circle of a cat, curled round in delight.


Today's poem is based on suggestions from six peeps:

  • @realnixwilliams: “colours: those pastel ones that look great in the sky but horrible in interior design.”
  • @slimejam: “Can you include something about the Old Exhibition Building. Or maybe something circular, like the pizza I had. Also, Carlton.”
  • @sorrel_smith: “How about *every* line rhymes (ie AAAAA...) Or am I being too mean?” (It’s probably meaner to the reader than it is to me!)
  • @ernmalleyscat: “what it's like to be an orphaned black & white domestic shorthair that fits in the palm of a human hand.”
  • @kirsty_I : “Lavender-point Himalayan #cats
  • @snazzydee: “Cerise”

Coincidental to @ernmalleyscat's suggestion, I actually do have a black & white domestic shorthair cat (Tolly) that I got from the Lost Dog's Home in 2004. I liked him because he had quite an odd face, and his eyes did look like stuck-on buttons (shades of Coraline's Other Mother, but not so creepy). And our notorious Honda Civic (the one where if you revved it too hard, the radio changed stations) did break down while on the way home from the vet's one day. We had to lug the cat carrier home on foot. He's enormous now (he weighs about 8kg, he's not particularly fat, just HUGE), and still headstrong and crazy-eyed like he was as a kitten. Here he is, about to attack me: