Circus

 

Clown-Car

 

She hands me the change.

I miss.

The two coins bounce off the rubbery counter.

I catch them mid-flight.

You should be in a circus, she says.

I am, I say. I mingle with clowns every day, drive around in an old jalopy, juggle my bills, keep the customers satisfied, pop popcorn at night; get up in the morning, put on my face paint and start all over again. What a performance!

She smiles at me nervously.

Anyhow, have a good day! I say.

You too, she says, as I walk away, honking my clown nose.

Between the Flags

swim

Two more drownings down at the Bay.

‘Swim between the flags’, lifesavers say.

Live between the flags, and you play it safe

But against such restrictions, the spirit chafes.

‘Don’t Drink Too Much’, ‘Gamble Responsibly’

‘Wear seat belts, bike helmets, drive responsibly.’

‘Don’t Smoke, Do Drugs’, the flags hem us in

& we’re scared little children, there seems to be no end.

‘Doctors won’t prescribe benzo- diazapines

Or other drugs of dependence’, and please no codeine.

‘Don’t Talk To strangers’, Be careful Online.

Swim between the flags and you’ll be just fine.

 

 

Old Schooner

photo-pint-beer-free-stock-image-royalty-free-instagram-social-media

I was reading a poem by Weldon Kees —

Does anyone read Weldon Kees nowadays? —

About Boris, ‘the fatalist parrot’ who fell off

his perch.

I thought of old Schooner in his cage in the

Drive thru bottle shop at Magnums at McLaren Vale.

At least he had some life in him unlike Boris

Who ‘watched the traffic flow, unheeding’.

You’d say ‘hello’ to Schooner. He wouldn’t say anything

But once you got your purchase and went to go,

He’d say ‘See Ya’ real chipper like. You’d wave back

And give him the thumbs up and if he could Schooner

Would reciprocate. He had a fan when it was hot and

A lamp for when it was cold and a little mirror to see

what a handsome chap he was. He looked well fed.

At least he didn’t pace up and down like a lion in a cage.

Whenever I have a glass now at Magnums I raise it

To old Schooner.

Waiting for the Apocalypse

Bril_Jesus_walking_on_the_Sea_of_Galilee

I am lying in bed waiting for the Apocalypse.

It is due fifteen minutes after midday.

We have been told these things before.

What do they know?

It is sunny outside though clouds are building.

There’s a piffle of a breeze rustling the bush outside my window though I notice it is picking up.

Could there be something in it?

Damn. There’s someone on the phone.

It’s Emily from my insurance company calling from interstate about a failed payment.

I question some details.

Just bear with me a moment, she says, as she scurries off to her superiors.

Don’t be long, I say. The Apocalypse is near.

Pardon?

The Apocalypse’

I’ll put you on hold, she says.

Dogs whine, doors clatter, the sky darkens.

Just then ADT Security phones.

What is wrong with you people? Don’t you know the Apocalypse is nigh?

Silence.

I go out to the verge, bring in the bins, look around. The winds have dropped.

All quiet on the western front.

Gus, the Jack Russel next door, barks at my presence.

It’s okay, buddy. It’s only me. And anyway it’s been postponed.

What has? it barks.

The Apocalypse.

Again?

Yes, again.

What the %$%&#.

Calm your farm, buddy.  We get to live another day.

I go inside, wait for the next alert.

 

Street of Hermits

hd-thinking-imagesI live in a street of hermits. I know people are there. I hear them putting out their rubbish bins in the evening. I see their TVs flickering in the windows at night. I hear the postman on his little buzz bike putting things in letter boxes, cars pulling in and out of driveways, voices in the street. I have not seen anybody for years. Perhaps I should get out more.

 

 

Faith

Folsom_Dam_Release

 

I pulled aside the blinds

that occluded my mind

Sunshine rushed in like

Water down a spillway

 

It felt so good, so holy

I knew I’d be okay

If I pulled aside the blinds

let in the sun’s rays