Ride of the Valkyrie.
the Wagnerian piece
it inspires great thoughts
middle ground of fantasy
ride of the heathens
on the wind from the north
merry hell in Teutonia
black horses draped
clothe of homespun
from spear and sword
and woman fight aside
power in numbers
tempo of their song
Teutons who stand and fight
a hailing banshee, Celts
from the wind of Brinhildar
song of wolf maidens
the atmosphere, another slain
put in the hands of Odin
and alikeness’s are many
too battling the foe, the women
great lord Odin, carried of to war
placed between the sacrificial mound
captured soldiers of battle, war torn
unwary, cast to his bidding.
to Opera on the radio
songs of the tenors and sopranos,
baritone and mezzo, the chorus
work drawing out my German side
baritone echoing the strong vocals
urgency of the music blindingly strong
tales from long ago, ringing in modern ears
to life with vocal precision
horse, the warrior, the Valkyrie
have their say in a piece of music
in temperament, long on wealth
voices entreating response with a beating heart.
smokers cough to start,
the windows for late rains,
the stands of Conifers,
rocking in an air
flight of Fantail and Blackbird
dance of Sparrow and Tomtit,
my errant vision,
Dance of Nature
by the Two Sentinels,
Oak and Prime Totara
pride of place
my carcass on my seat,
off Nature as I compose,
reality, a screen and keyboard
flighty or staunch
an arms throw away
the trees and birds
a goodly distance
the evolution track.
I will do the same,
autumn finally here,
be in for a few surprises,
birds gone to roost,
trees disrobing for the chill.
the sentinels will stand and stare
knowing what it is they are guarding,
of thought, null of feeling, just null
though, they wither
spring back into life down track
me keep reality in check
aching minds and wings and twigs.
Breakfast at Stephanie’s
The crackle of crisp bacon
many splatters of fried corn fritters
the chop chop of a finely diced onion
a delicate carving of an over ripe tomato
the turning over of the fritters
a gurgle of fresh milk
sounds of breakfast
the family milling around
the taste of food consumed with ease
fresh cream on cereal called Skippy,
the pop of toast from the toaster
knives spreading Marmite
She whistles as she works
wispy cool air pervades the room
a dog outside whines for the cooking odours
a mess on completion, husband and kids gone
the dogs getting scraps, the cat cream
the sink a litany of overuse.
last drop of wine
from a disturbed tumbler
floor much used to art.
images spread around the room
to their standing,
so the beast of Red Wine
all around it
none the better
dribbles on the tableau
idle fingers sketch a romance scene
cherished pinky dotting I’s
legs and fingers
the right Mr Right to notice
Dead Mans Journey
my car at 180 kilometres per hour
a steep hill, up the staple slope,
like the wind had no power
the effort in the act of planting boot,
along the Western Access roadway
Sport 1600cc sports car
like the howling banshees of Eire
across the volcanic plains of home,
at break neck speed past fields
tall volcanoes long silent and ready,
waiting police cars geared to chase
the timelessness of an errant desert,
the nose, pointing down the highway,
speed stretching to 200 kilometres per hour
briefly for a refill, car and driver
back on the journey to hell, home
like an F1-11 fighter, honed to kill
on impact, to cause havoc
last vestige of rubber plying the road
and a half hours from Auckland to Mum,
with extreme car and speed, home
streets with children crossing, old folk too
where the dreaded cops lived in droves
where my parents knew everyone.
day, both well buried, they knew not
devil may care freedom of my High Road,
up there or down wherever they know
to date I drive no more, lived life once.
Iran claiming Iraq
the US hamstrung
in Arabic blood
a US recession
all behind it
a stronger hand
sound of no petroleum
long dead, crying
me, a new hope
way of changing times,
plenty of good
wars of an errant world
a Buzz word.
my window to the trees
mysteries still playing.
News on TV no more
sound of the radio comforting,
the downhill slide
happen this year, 50!!
a momentous occasion that will be
many times I could have joined my parents.
What has Dying got to do with it.
right to choose
right to die
the elderly marking time
they think about it”
an interesting thought
a daughter was jailed
helping her cancer ridden mother
on from this cruel planet
fate in the hands of Justice
there is no justice
a frail shade
is not dignity
friends and family
about when, not if
in dying publicly
the urge to berate folks
never be capable of knowing
count the elderly,
this pact with God
he inflict cancer upon me
have the right to shorten
blow that will affect most,
I know there is a chance
will get cancer, it runs
family not capable of caring.
How Education isn’t the key to Life
do something to make her proud,
“Dad, I’m already proud”
too and left it at that.
The Rafter Series 7
leapt to attention
a quick salute
cared or noticed
let her arm
a “fuck you”
a dissipating innuendo.
awaiting a hot car
require each other
fast and fly
a devil route home.
kissed each other
two people can
passion in our after-breaths,
luck shines once
love torn world.
wagons rolled ever eastward,
long journey in often cold winds
through cattle wagons
in human suffering,
those that were a part
still and said it didn’t happen
the Jews were happy with their lot.
is a river of pain.
paper mache figurines
newspapers, a bit of glue
the kind you sniff)
the order of time,
put to use;
fire roars hot.
Reflections on Life in Bold Type
childhood, I’d go to the river, and skip stones. I’d stand on one
bank too, and try and throw a stone across the river. I tried this until one
I succeeded. I didn’t need to throw any more, but still had to skip to
see if I could break my Father’s family record. One day he died and I had
no need to chase his record. I have daughters now, and neither have been to the
river to skip stones.
chance to pass down
with real life
pace of life
things we do daily.
in love with his wife
a veritable witch
that make him
a lucky soul,
happy with his life,
it make him greater than I
than the cosmos?
my family for a short bush walk. The place was a motel/camp called Sapphire Springs. It had to be lucky, my wife’s birthstone was Sapphire. We walked for about two hours and crossed little streams (I didn’t skip stones) and climbed small
hills. We all enjoyed the twitter of wild birds, the patter of feet on undergrowth,
the splash of dirty shoes in puddles, the aroma of old forest and trees meant to impress.
my bed every night
same way as I made it I the morning
to engender order
dust mites crawling.
I was divorced
the careful Father
the happy husband
to pieces by a mental disorder,
happy with my life
by heck I miss my family.
it to the five mile bridge, Sally and I. She a consummate walker, me a doodler,
just making the distance. In my youth I
would have run that distance in the blink of an eye, but now my youth has deserted me, left me for the decay of oldish age. My running is now in my fingertips, the need to write poetry and short fiction to
sate my existence. I made an acrostic up the other day.
realised if I put any letter at the beginning I change the effect of the words. I
liked BOLD – Bloody Oranges Lack Desire. I thought again about going down
to the river and to see if I could throw a stone across it. If not, then I’m
a kid again, regressing. I’d also be so bold enough to skip stones again,
to try and break Dad’s record (in my dreams).
The Sound of Easy Street
(or a Chorus Cacophony)
a bright kid
a 12 inch
through one end
to his Fathers Toolbox
the auger out
a series of holes
he calls it
a sound of whistling air,
around in the garage
something to fit the end
out a mouthpiece
it in the cavity
pipe ready to play
with his breath
Peter and the magic polythene pipe
the rats from the neighbourhood
what invention and desire can do.
North Riding Bus Shelter
cue for hours, ladies in Pink tights,
blessed with the clothing of winter,
without the car, DUI.
bus comes Red and Yellow
cab with forty seats
a place to park mothers prams,
Number Seven takes us all the way into town,
Number Six drives by the Supermarkets
all manner of society detrain.
the Gothic Cathedrals of downtown
towers of Light refracted beaming down
rank territory of the Number Three.
come, they go, they sit, they stand,
ogle if old gentlemen, tut tut if elderly Ma’ams,
children keep their mouths shut, just because,
Number Two regularly breaks down
roads difficult to negotiate, Chinatown
pace of life fostered in Wonton Shops,
I await the Number Thirteen Bus
bus to Hell, the ride even nastier,
each day, I go to Hell and Back, survivor.
Wild Bean Café
stop on the Main Highway
food, hotter coffee
the long drive
a cross section
guy with wispy goatee
counting the money.
so cold night
in need of a fix
tired eyes open.
us the Wild Bean diminishes
hot coffee sitting well
for a pie too.
The Dangers of Lust
temperature was hot, very high on a scale meant to measure mediocrity. The summer
plants sheltered with secretions, the spring plants long burnt off and dead. The
rising damp in houses down Dreadhill Drive reminiscent
of the Titanic taking on water, though the cool ice of that Berg would be welcome now.
two to tango
pans and vases
to a dispute,
it the man the night before
errant flippant remarks
the bottle of vodka emptied
two meet with a fiery outburst.
kitchen resembles a bomb site
stacked willy nilly, haphazardly
left over food dripping on a floor
in need of cleaning.
juice from the vodka slammers
in dribble marks across it
refrigerator emptied of TV dinners.
the insipid heat, the tempers fraying, the plants all dying off, not being watered.
The house next door has a green lawn, floral displays in fine fettle, all the regalia of care and attention. The hangover looks out the window at it, and cringes, dives back into the bed in search of another bottle. ‘Thank fuck the kids have gone,’ she thinks, ‘they’d never
latest boyfriend snores on a sofa
large feet, too large perhaps,
over the arm, his toenails uncut,
remnants of the kitchen walk still clinging
used to regular cleaning,
wanders in, naked as a bald badger
Brazilian flashing, her pierced belly button
heavy makeup, all point to youth,
she never had, her first child at seventeen,
in her early forties, fortified
and gaunt, smiling and not
the bare foot, another romp
he’s packed off for the day.
neighbours never talk. There is a perception she is a whore, the many men that
come and go, that she’s a self made prostitute. She doesn’t work,
or has never been seen to. Even in winter the comings and goings match summers
heat. The lash of a bullwhip in one house suggests S&M could be a possibility,
to get the bitch into shape. No that’s too extreme, still George at 356
practices everyday, having been one of her visitors many moons ago. He hallucinates.
drive hard on the couch,
sweat mingling with his,
sudden fierce thrusts,
with the smell of decay,
with week old sheets.
farewells him, he says tonight
say “I doubt it”, and laughs
she’s in charge, her destiny
smiles as she sees the lotto ticket
of place in a disheveled sitting room,
winning ticket, been two years now,
many times the children haven’t visited
to get a share, but not to share her life
many days where loneliness
by bars and clubs, and men
the odd boy if he’s willing.
all look at her place. They knew she won, and are not pleased to have her as
a neighbour. The children see things and ask awkward questions. Most tell the truth, a lonely witch, a scion on society, a blotch of misread makeup as she wanders in and
out in her own time. The taxis are often, her and her men. She doesn’t drive now, too many DUI’s. The Porsche
in the garage a toy for her son to play with if and when he comes. Sadly for her, and the neighbours, not too often, she gets
the cleaners and gardeners in when family are due.
shower, relief, sensational
hot on a sweaty back
aching from a good time
by water flowing,
pounding offering an ache
police were called
noise of glass breaking
thrown at mirrors and paintings
sound of a running vacuum
flung in the kitchen
dishes and glasses;
packed her away
for psychiatric assessment.
is a silent mind killer.
The Rafter Series 8
who think they can multitask
decide whether a dying cellphone
peace loving outfit
to look silly
themselves to death.
a lovely suite of music
in Tchaikovsky’s’ Swan Lake
you have beauty in tune.
bravest of men and women
the winter chill
peaks of Ice
the warm afterglow
mountain well climbed.
grovel in their own inadequacies.
it two o’clock,
out tax rebates
any money due me;
Government always wins.
the deepest regret
similar to hot onions
the move from Right to Wrong
parting shot misfires
target missed, on the move,
the Eiffel Tower reigns over Paris
doughnuts on a cops beat
taste of hastily eaten fare
seven second moments
sex dissolves laughter
lasting relationship – two years,
invented many things before his time
like Martha Davis reinventing cooking
last drops of summer rain signify winter.
topics to a bulletin board for comment
to chopping wood with a blunt axe,
when simplicity is replaced by luck.
the realm of Journeymen
of local content,
hill behind Macy’s attainable.
life of Brian Dougherty very Irish,
Celtic brogue, his lilting Catholicism,
sounds of Belfast emanate from his home,
all life is wrung out, hung out to dry,
sunshine and warm zephyr’s
new life to old clothing, zest to the wearer.
One day in a Ward
the floor, you heavily pregnant
nails shorter than they were this morning
moment drawing near, encapsulation
waters break and the dam bursts free
the head, pass words of condolences
you by blowing on your face, your arms
fighter in you saying Birth, the process slow
body appears, then legs, then feet
mid wife smacks Amy Nicole’s backside
old cry echoes through the room
sound of another life bursting forth
first cuddle, fresh and clean, memory.
make it sound so sweet, forgotten
hours of pain and curses, sweat
they mop your brow to freshen you up
able to hold your baby, our joy,
year that baby is twenty one years old
I show her this poem I wonder
to her health, her vitality
mother who gave so much for her?
Fifty Two Percent
how I rate as a poet
two miserable percent
my work is better
others I’ve helped
bloody fifty two percent
class average was sixty two,
I don’t sit here mulling it over
my portfolio two is worth more
standard of poetry greater
a lot of those I’ve helped
yes, fifty two does irk
at my work submitted
rejoice a seventy five at least
fallen a little short, teeth gritted
the long battle ahead with academia,
the hell would they know?)
had a bottle of Whiskey
it’d be bone dry.
an inveterate people watcher. I look at how people dress for their standing in
Life. I see that sometimes people overdress, their perceived standing only perceived. I watch how people walk, to discern handicaps or imponderables, concepts of right
and wrong spring forth too, does someone look right, and what’s wrong if they don’t.
dead come out at night
the dark streets
vacant of chatty school kids,
howls of laughter reminiscent
tyres and doughnuts
the kind cops on the beat devour)
leaving ghost trails
on pavement surfaces.
mothers and children too young for school, shopping in haste before the next downpour flourishes. I see the elderly spinster in her motorized buggy crossing the road too far down from the zebra crossing,
dodging traffic and maddened drivers. I espy the scruffy cur digging for scraps,
his mangy fur dank from years of abuse.
Night riders with money to burn
gas to guzzle,
in the morning
rubberized skid marks
watching fillies aghast
audacity of the young ones.
ghosts of Night, screaming
dark with fear,
the realm of the doomsayers,
too busy making love
a mercilessly lost child.
outside the Supermarket, the long limbs of the sexy girls, the short limbs of the elderly, the languid looks of frazzled mothers,
uncaring fathers, noisy kids. I remember those days when I was one of the above,
and now appreciate what fine hunters Mothers have become, and what terrible waste of time fathers have become. I think of
the Black Widow syndrome, if only the mother could kill the father of her children and devour him for the daily groceries.
at night, love churns
in cars, in scars
battle cry of the new millennium happening everywhere.
me your baby Boy
can become old
can walk, me ahead,
two paces behind.
last of the ghosts settle for the night
on my Nannies tombstone a eulogy
is meant to be enjoyed, as is death”
they’ve forgotten her, I haven’t.
I watch all people, and in them each I find a little of my own life, wondering too if I’ll be the daredevil Granny on
a scooter, no longer wanting to walk two paces back from the Black Widow, happy to stand and stare (yes sometimes gawk) and
to think that mangy dog was me for a few days in 2005. I know the long legs are
history, and the burn outs to impress the young lovelies, but I always have my eyes, my mind, and always as ever these days,
a poetry pen with which to write about it all. The ghosts are the empty pens
I would have had had it not been for the PC and internet.
A Puff of Wind
yachts, striking white,
fluttering in a summers breeze,
spinnaker filled yet fluffy,
gibe to port to win the race
another to starboard,
an untenable advantage,
the teethy dragon,
the many sailing craft behind,
bow of “Fantail” a hairs breadth astern,
gates of the finishing post
closer with each puff of a dying wind,
spinnaker flicks and then refills,
energy to push our boat
further in front, to a meritorious win,
sails and stow away, another race run.
What’s on your Desktop
really look at my Desktop Icons
Word and Excel live there,
Yahoo IM and MSN Messenger
Connect to Internet thingy is there too
with Adobe 8.0, and a Print Icon
what else is on my Desktop, on yours?
have a look, hmmm be patient please,
MS PowerPoint and MS Access,
Thumbs imaging resizer, AD-Aware
Anti Virus and InterVideo Win DVD,
now a regular potpourri of software
used, USB Handsfree and Solitaire,
to mention Hearts and Spider Solitaire,
Media Player and CCleaner,
Photo Application with a User Guide,
now other less used programmes,
Bin and My Computer, Xtra,
and Shortcut to FP30.
starting my poetry course,
the anti virus software and Ad Aware
CCleaner have been used with vigour.
Time, a silent collusion.
aside the minutes
past once the now
now to history books
poets ruthless tableau.
wishing well in the mall,
of children’s pennies,
aside for Time to rule,
Now lost to the disappearing past.
lifeblood of living
ticking of an errant heart
pulse of blood
the passage of life.
hearts beating as one
in cases, tripping
exodus of happenings
to the possibility
clock telling the future.
in collusion with Father
moments as memories,
collector of seconds ticking by
hand moving clockwise.
Hey Big Bullies
a busy day today,
with Gina the Bus Driver
pointing out my zip was down
my way to the middle of the bus
with an elderly gentleman
sat picking his nose all the way to town.
a paddock with seven bulls in it
you could smell the testosterone,
seven, there could have been more.
hills in the distance
a fresh dump of snow,
the reason for two days of winter (in autumn),
a Hearing Voices Workshop to attend to,
it in time, yes made sure the door was shut,
about setting up before the others arrived.
a quick ciggy, as you do
to Dean (yeah he smoked too)
each other for the 3 hours to follow,
the cuff, I’d say the girls arrived (and Kerry)
set about changing the room from what we had done
off our backs, we smiled.
victims arrived to be enlightened,
the workshop began, me speaking
them of my life with a mental illness,
it means to be a voice hearer, implications,
answering back is hazardous.
much three hours later, drained
to pack up, lunch first – supplied,
into the debrief, home soon, another bus,
on the bus, a new driver, Aaron
dare look at my crotch, bullish man,
counted the bulls again, still seven.
home, a cup of coffee, a couple of smokes,
the time with the other “inmates”
down (looking at my crutch -sensing testosterone)
Writing Mark Twain, by Huck Finn
the streets meeting lodgers
codgers, the Artful Dodger
Mark Twain again and again
time Huck Finn was on the train.
the Maternity ward afraid of life
afraid of a baby bearing wife,
Emily Bronte write a book of love
the pictures, poses, scores from above.
mailed you a love letter for a laugh
dialogue monotonal, crying in the bath
legs stiff from disuse, abuse, obtuse,
legs with cellulite a sign of life’s refuse.
free in the storm, tossed, toiled
first thing a Dad does, the nappy soiled,
of time, chimed, rhymed, sublime
necessities of life like a mountain climbed.
out to the wind, wind, find, grind
last days at Brackenworst gone behind,
dancing in windows, pillows, prose
poems of writers lost like water from a hose.
drip, drop, drop, the whole shebang flops,
daisies in the garden yellow, mellow, STOP!
poem’s not about anything tangible, bull
says this poet has to go back to school.
What’s Love got to do with Life?
should be ashamed
me a liar and a cheat
even go with her
have this argument everytime
hello to a natural blonde
you assume my come hither eyes
spill too much champagne
gut rotting with each drink
once again you accuse me of cheating,
polite to correct your mind
forth and teach you a lesson
you out to a steak eatery
you quaff down red meat
once again, your drinking causes problems
time I’ve ogled the waitress
her cute behind, and winked
I’m a cheat, I do these things
I don’t love you or anything, I do
hate it when you call me a cad.
I took my secretary to lunch
and told you, you screamed
about me, you bastard” you cried
of placating fell on deaf ears,
booked a motel room, and yes
it, I cheated, just to feel what it’s like,
no recriminations, I told you too
just scoffed, as if the thought was incomprehensible,
knew I was lying, I knew I wasn’t.
me and Susie, the secretary
into a flat, the relationship sweet,
accusations, no biting alcoholism,
simple sex, simple cuddles, simplicity
either, though this is just the beginning,
love her, I don’t love you either, get it?
Ones Last Breath
like, oh I don’t know,
camels in procession
swallowed in sand
as a saw on wood
heave of a swollen chest
a ship against the swell
strain showing on every rivet,
meeting present, swollen.
if it needs description
sound of reeds in the wind
in a full orchestra
my chesty cough
away, phlegm aplenty
spittoon filled to overflowing,
camel shit in abundance.