States of Poetry ACT Poems

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Where am I?' by Karen Knight

Karen Knight
16 February 2017

Where am I?

 

I am desperate for connection.
I must have hit a black spot.
The sun is glaring at me and blinding
my display screen.
All I can see is my own face.
Coarse sand has crept between my toes.
I have wandered too far.
I need to google a map, text someone
who will reconnect me.
This shell, this sand, the smell of rotting ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Graces Road' by Louise Oxley

Louise Oxley
16 February 2017

Graces Road

 

Rise above it, my mother used to say,
and now she's old, she herself is something I must rise above.
Just now, to separate myself, I turned and drove,
and finding Graces Road, followed its name
upwards to paddocks that a summer of scant rain
had worked into yellow and m ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Notes from the inland' by Louise Oxley

Louise Oxley
16 February 2017

Notes from the inland

 

When he goes into that country,
a man loses his thinking
                                  Patrick Mung Mung

 

A tree opens
a crack ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Woman in Bath' by Louise Oxley

Louise Oxley
16 February 2017

Woman in Bath

 after Brett Whiteley’s Woman in Bath (1964)

 

There was fog on the windows,
inside and out.
She wound her hair into a bun
and eased into the shallow water.
I stood in the doorway, squinting.
                  &n ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Reply from the Women of Tangier' by Louise Oxley

Louise Oxley
16 February 2017

Reply from the Women of Tangier

 

after Brett Whiteley’s The Majestic Hotel, Tangier (1967)

 

So secretly together do we wear
our separateness, we’re so complete
he gives us the white stare.

Easy to see decay and disrepair
in the spittle and hashish-ruined streets.
But secretly together we all wear

our ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Green Mountain (Fiji)' by Louise Oxley

Louise Oxley
16 February 2017

Green Mountain (Fiji)

 

after Brett Whiteley’s The Green Mountain (Fiji) (1969)

 

The skyward pitch of the hill in its green glory
rising heavy and indolent as the knee of a woman
sunbathing in a sarong,
and the thigh that leads from this knee,
an emerald downswelling syncline,
end where the womb’s elasti ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Window' by Tim Thorne

Tim Thorne
16 February 2017

Window

 

What is the mind that would invent the lock?
What are the pathways of the brain
that must be followed with no ball of string
to arrive at a device
which excludes? Why would you start?

If this slab of the earth
was where you had always been,
there would be no entry point,
no threshold of distrust, only the base
a ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Waking' by Tim Thorne

Tim Thorne
16 February 2017

Waking

 

Note the passive voice in that last line,
the denial implied. ‘People were shipped out.’
The agent with a conscious brain linked
to a hand with a pen or a gun felt his own grip
all along the neural pathways.

Some noises we can sleep through
but even the softest can be an alarm.
Sailboats in the calmest water are still not ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Theft' by Tim Thorne

Tim Thorne
16 February 2017

Theft

 

The maps that teased my childhood were silent.
The imagination they cosseted
was of no use. Instead of song
there was a flatness, a sheet of pastel shades.
I could find Peru, but not food.

And these maps were my inheritance.
Maps can be owned. Land is something else.
Maps can be stolen. When the atlas claps shut
those who ... More

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'On the Mountain' by Tim Thorne

Tim Thorne
16 February 2017

On the Mountain

 

Here where clouds soothe rocks, high above commerce,
I could catalogue the sharper images
of evil but to what use? City tabloids
and browsers will unroll bandages
enough to wrap communal wounds.

The bardic robe sits ill. The mist suggests
the insubstantiality of wish.
Summon a future like some old romantic,
some ... More

Page 6 of 10