I went where she reigned
far underground, deeper
than roots, in rooms hollowed
by hand and bone, where curved walls
contained my breath like lungs.
Passageways opened onto chambers
honeycombed in stone
While women scanned the horizon, fishers
and hunters tended their nets, someone
etched the Lapwing crown-plumes in clay.
Abandoning hunger and
its frozen ground, they soar
South with the Grigale wind
Middle Sea harbingers of the
Lampuki-fish moon, its halo
a herald of autumn rains.
Outlines, incisions quicken those
We met at the Neolithic display. I was staring
at the loom-weights, suspended in a glass case.
Handcarved stones, smaller than seashells
a tell-tale hole bored through their middle. That’s when
I noticed you, uncanny yet not out of place
holding a loom-weight. You seemed at home with fibre
your fingers felt its tensions, slack or taut,
sensitive to tex ...
Alabaster: such a beautiful word for silence.
Neolithic Venus, was translucence eloquent
enough when stone was our mother tongue?
Yellow-throated crocus were strewn
at your feet, they fed you honey
and broad beans. Worship swelled
your breasts and fertile belly, men lived
without weapons, women were weavers
and potters crowned in cowrie shells
Archipelago, sleeping goddess whose body
we trample as tourists take selfies, bored lovers
seek mystery, stray dogs piss on temple stones.
Inside the sanctuary walls, torba floors endure
their bone-white ground broken as the silence
now deities are curios, gift shop souvenirs.
Asphodel and Sea-squill bloom in the corners of ruins
strewn like footnotes to ...
you opt for form over colour
makeup smudged lenses
pale bare planes by the lakes;
a cygnet ellipsis in black
white sky reflected in high water.
we sit where I have stayed
and watched an oak open and close –
green again – the bench
suspended on ampersands.
excerpt from Ligature
he drops his shoulders
lets out his breath
finds himself benched
between green wood slats and
a black plastic platter of sushi,
disposable sticks in his hand.
ache on his right eye like a river stone
thinking like five hands
at the piano. city stratified in front
his eye’s diameter
excerpt from Ligature
her office kept cold
she shivers exhales
but never the satisfaction
of seeing her breath
a red-black plaid blanket wraps
her legs pattern
reminiscent of red dust picnics –
Chris Arnold lives in Perth and used to work as a software engineer. He was published in Westerly’s first writers’ development program, and now works as the journal’s web editor. In 2017, Chris commenced a cr ...
I am a dickhead in ways I thought I wasn’t
I am a dickhead in ways people who call me a dickhead can’t imagine
I am a dickhead in ways people who call me a dickhead can imagine
I am a dickhead with residues and hangovers of misapplic ...