States of Poetry SA

Friesian cows are leaning
over the fence

their eyes are an intense study
of nothing

a bus load of Japanese tourists

the cows take black and white
snap shots of them


When a

A cross
is made
in woodwork

are drawn
in the art room

The school flag
is hoisted
to half mast

In the assembly hall
vases of lilies
are placed

At recess
the children sit together
a little tighter

The playground
swing has
a minute’s silence


Jules Leigh KochJules Leigh Koch was born in Sydney and raised in Adelaide. He is the author of five poetry collections and has been a recipient of two South Australian Literature grants in 2008 and 2011. He has conducted poetry ...

T.S. Eliot's couch
There was once a couch in the Grolier Poetry Bookshop
in Cambridge where T.S. Eliot snoozed.


Send out scouts to track it down and when they do,
stand two strong men, one at each end.
Let them count and on the shout of three

lift ...

One minute the bird is cutting a curve – blue
in two, the swift repair of air – the next,
it’s glottal-stopped in the throat of a dog.
Beyond lies the dog’s muscled tongue-hug
forcing the bird in a slavered-leather
slide past the pharynx, down the gullet
into the gunge and gore of a slaughterhouse floor.

From their front row seats in the corporate b ...

Peter Roget suffered from depression, disconsolation,
gloom, melancholia, pessimism ...

He lived a life of bitterness, desolation, grief, irritation,
lamentation, misery, pain ...

Not that there weren’t periods of bliss, exuberance,
happiness, joy, light-heartedness ...

Not that he wasn’t awake to the wonders of the world,
to its beauty, brillianc ...

After Karin Gottshall

Sometimes I say I’m going to meet my mother just because
I like saying it. I like it for its mouth feel and pleasure:
... meet my mother.

It was a phone call at 3 am drove those words away.
Three years later, with no conscious effort on my part,
they followed an overgrown but still navigable path

all the way t ...

London 2016

At the National Gallery I pay sixteen outraged pounds
to view the Beyond Caravaggio exhibition. No chiaro
to speak of, only scuro, each canvas caked in mud-brown
and bad-blood red on a background of black black black.
I dodge the ladies of the U3A religious art class, decline

the complimentary depressive illness, and in a quick s ...

Louise Nicholas photograph by Mike Taylor ABR States of PoetryLouise Nicholas is a semi-retired teacher and long-term member of the Adelaide poetry community. WomanSpeak, co-written wi ...

I met Ted Berrigan
in a dream

wearing a T-shirt
standing in a sparsely
furnished room

the early Berrigan
not yet bed ridden
but distinctly
pot bellied

& the beard
of course

it was a vivid dream
I can’t remember
if he said anything

but he seemed pleased
to be there.