The secret slip

This is the point from which I always leave
I lock my baggage into a box
to free me while I wait
The key is a number
A secret printed
on a slip of paper
My instrument won’t fit
I have to carry it

This is the point
Under the table my instrument
crouches in its sheath
The locos stand on the lines
bellowing their punk
A sound like yellow streaks
in smoky black
I loved you so much I wanted to unlock
the boxes in your head
and write your healing songs

It doesn’t happen like that
This is the point from which I always leave
I’ll turn my back on the lines
I’ll wrangle my instrument
unlocker my baggage
and put them
on a bus
I’ll sit beside a cellist from Chile
who produces trance and trip-hop
I’ll throw away
the secret slip

First published in Creatrix

a black dress

Melbourne 17/9/2011

Bridget says the fog
is coming in I’m touched
by the road toll something veiled
in the distance a spoilt brat
raised in the firstworld cot
my every shit licked up
and praised my every shit
an activism my every shit
a scar you can breathe to make
you sick my sister I don’t notice you
coughing I don’t even see you I’m looking
for something veiled in the distance a long
cigarette holder Meg says given
a black dress a leather coat these disputable truths Bridget
says the fog is coming in
I’m touched by the road toll
this ship is yours not fucking likely Candice says
step up and be the man beside me my passive-
aggressive character defect my resistance by inaction not
my fault not my fault they
gave me it and when I drank it
the pain went away but his parents
are lovely she said such lovely people it must be him
there is something wrong with him his every shit
an action his every piss a resistance his every word
a bullet his every sigh a blanket his absence
the cold his absence the winter he is creating
all these beats where are my family? where
is my country? but he is so still sometimes no matter
where I go sometimes I wonder just what I’m doing
there someone says a black dress a leather coat what
do I do now that this has occurred? if I danced it would look
like a performance the floor is strong
smooth wood the music is fine nobody dares
to dance this is not my gig boys
with their doe-eyed dates eventually it will begin my eyes
are sharp no matter where I go it’s kind of dark
here he is creating all these beats a black dress nobody
dares to dance what
do I do now this
is not my gig