That Zippy Young Bloke

That’s us, at T Chow’s, the wonderful Chinese restaurant in China Town, our Cheers, on the last night before Lockdown. The place is bustling and you can only see half of it because the photographer stood in the middle to get a shot of the group, the one with the bloke in the wheelchair. It’s always happy there and everybody does know our name. There’s always three of us, often four but sometimes it grows to seven or eight.

Things are different now of course. Numbers are limited and they do a roaring take-away trade and there’s a new bloke, Brian — they always adopt an English name [is that a form of racism, I wonder?] —- who zips between tables spread out over the four quadrants of the restaurant. He’s young, he’s zippy and athletic with a great sense of humor. Everyone is cheery at T-Chow’s. You never see a long face or a frown. It’s where we hang out Friday nights. It’s our Cheers.

  • tell us about your favourite dining place: is it the food, the atmosphere, the company?

Temporarily Unattended

Sometimes my mind

runs off

like that bloke’s mouth

outside the gym

pontificating about those fisticuffs

at the footy

“those weren’t friendly fisticuffs;

that was full on, mate”,

about George Pell:

‘ someone will pop him off one day,

like they did JFK’

or the Black Lives Matter protest rallies —

you don’t want to know’;

but I round my mind up

before it goes too far off the tracks

& give it a little talking to:

mostly I keep a close watch on this mind

of mine

‘Quilton Loves Your Bum’

Quilton Loves My Bum

I know it’s clever advertising

but it’s kinda creepy too

the idea that some stranger called Quilton

‘loves your bum’.

Going by his presence on the supermarket shelves

he seems to love a lot of bums.

I’m sure it’s Platonic

but couldn’t they have used ‘like’?

wouldn’t that have been preferable?

It’s sort of reassuring that Quilton ‘loves’ your bun

but it’s kinda creepy too.

Transcendental Soap

I wash myself with transcendental soap,

it makes me shine, lathers my hope,

rinses away all my petty needs,

you know the ones: the urge to pee,

to have three square meals, to sleep

it lifts me high, takes me deep

whenever I feel that I’m on the ropes

I wash myself with transcendental soap

Burmese

The cat is the forgotten candidate when they fight:

sure, they hurt each other but the cat recoils too,

even the walls and lounge chairs at the suddenness,

the squall of this. The walls and sofas cannot move,

but the cat can. Exit, pursued by bear. Only small,

but with the memory of an elephant. The cat remembers

long after they forget.

Forklift Driver

I don’t want to be a forklift driver

the rest of my life

the 23 year-old from Perth said

just before he came on stage

and belted out

‘I Need You Tonight’ by INXS

only as good as Michael Hutchens

and he looked good,

strong, strapping with brown tumbling curls

& a sinuous, sexy voice

which filled the hall and lifted the coaches

& crowd

like a forklift driver

*pic courtesy of Wiki Commons

The Right Thing To Say

When I can’t figure things out

& I seem to have lost my way

you always know the right things

the right things to say


I know words don’t come easy

that meanings go astray

but still you know the right things

the right things to say



I may have the learning

the diploma and B.A

But besides you I’m inarticulate

lost for what to say


At the end of each morning

at the end of each day

you always know the right things

the right things to say

Like Hummingbirds on Crack

D,H, Moore wrote

in 2014

that his thoughts buzzed around

‘like hummingbirds

on crack’

but I like to think

of

Wordsworth & his sister Dorothy

wandering aimlessly

as a cloud

through the fields

in 1804

& being seized

by the vision

of the ‘host of golden daffodils’.

my distractions sit

in between

plentiful & constant

as weather;

sooner or later one settles

like a hummingbird

on a flower

pic courtesy of Wiki Commons