Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Tuesday Poem: "Three Limericks"

A fellow who hailed from Slough
had a face like the back of a cow.
When his friends with alarm
saw a girl on his arm,
they were miffed so they didn’t ask: “How?”

An old man who had travelled the Earth
said the prettiest city was Perth.
“I’ve seen Paris and Rome,
but they don’t feel like home
nor Las Vegas for what it is worth.”

A man who came from Westonia*
said: “Life here makes me feel lonelier.
I go to the city
for succour and pity,
but the people there are phonier.”

*Westonia is a very small country town in the wheatbelt area of Western Australia. My friend (who came from Perth and had trouble adjusting at first) was headmaster of the small school there for a time and, although Westonia had a small population, it was a charming country town with very friendly inhabitants as country folk often tend to be.

 POET'S NOTE: I've been involved in a lot of serious stuff lately, political activism, community activism and the like, so as an antidote I thought I'd post something frivolous this week. In light of Bill's zero Budget, I thought we could all use a giggle. Hope you enjoy.

And don't forget to check out all the other great poets on Tuesday Poem.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Tuesday Poem: "Margaret River Haiku"

Sun-crested inlet,
white heron stalks the shallows,
darts into silver.

Ash-cheeked pelican,
comic, ungainly on land,
poem on the wind.

Bowls of blue-green glass
thrown by wind against water,
gifts for orange cliffs.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Tuesday Poem: "The Ballad of Sally and Al"

A girl was born to country folk
who chose a soft, sweet name
though Mother saw in Sally’s eyes
a spirit none could tame.

She seized upon her mother’s breast
to suck with greedy joy
and pummelled when the flow was slow
just like a boisterous boy.

Some speedy need urged on her growth,
she heeded no restraint.
“Oh, Sal, you go through clothes so fast,”
was Mum’s pride-tinged complaint.

She started school and broke the rules:
she would not play with dolls.
Her teachers were perplexed and vexed,
tradition ruled their souls.

For even at this tender age
convention pressed her hard.
They weighed her feelings: “rebellious”
was marked upon her card.

But Sally heard a secret chord
that only brave hearts pluck;
the score for Sally’s symphony
was penned with her first f..k.

She lives a city lifestyle now,
her colleagues call her Sal,
but in her short-haired social set
her playthings call her Al.

POET'S NOTE: I wrote this poem a few years ago in homage to a lesbian friend and very loosely based on her life. It is written in a very traditional ballad form which I felt made a kind of ironic comment on the content often found in traditional ballads, that of the tough man on the land battling nature to eke out a living.

The original has the rude word, but I thought I should soften it somewhat in case the young and innocent might read this blog. It's a family show, folks.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Tuesday Poem: "Turn It Down"

Beethoven rolled over twice that night
as we rode the wild Brylcreem
to a time warp
where Lou Reed
could not Rock’n’Roll.
In hot-rod heaven
food is thrown,
motors are blown
and The Cure unknown.
What’s the Matamata?
“You’re not pleasing us.”

POET'S NOTE: I wrote this poem many years ago inspired by an experience playing in bands. At the time I was a vocalist in a band based in Paeroa and I was living at Waihi Beach. Through an acquaintance, our band got asked to play for the Matamata Hot Rod club. So one Saturday night, we were engaged to play for about three hours in a large marquee tent down in Bowentown at the southern end of Waihi Beach. 

The gig was not a success as the hot-rodders were stuck in some sort of pre-1960s time warp and this was the early 1980s. We played a mixture of covers and originals, but the only two songs we knew that they liked were "Roll Over Beethoven" and another early 60s song which now escapes my memory. 

One of the funniest incidents that evening was when we had just finished playing the Lou Reed song, "Rock and Roll", and a drunken hot-rodder bellowed at us, "Play some rock'n'roll!" 

The worst incident was when another disgruntled, drunken hot-rodder threw a pitcher/jug of beer at our lead guitarist, getting liquid near the pick-ups of his beautiful and expensive Gibson Les Paul Goldtop. Enraged guitarist unplugged and went out in the audience, with guitar still strapped on, to punch out said moron. Like all morons, this one promptly fled before our guitarist could wreak his vengeance. Oh, what a night!

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Tuesday Poem: "Poem for a Vegetarian"

This morning I had my brains stewed for breakfast
and the lamb lies down
on the Dresden China
where they eat only rice,
boiled white because purity
is the essence of hunger
and Deng Xiaoping,
asked how he viewed the American gift
of the musk oxen,
said, “They were delicious.”

POET'S NOTE: This poem was inspired by an article in a newspaper that I read many years ago about how when US President Richard Nixon was trying to thaw the American relationship with China, he had two musk oxen sent to the Chinese Premier as a gift. I believe they were a breeding pair and I guess it was assumed by Nixon that they would be placed in a zoo. Sometime later when the US ambassador to China asked Deng Xiaoping, the Chinese Premier, about the gift, he supposedly replied that they were delicious. Cultural rapprochement still had some way to go.

On another related aspect, Morrissey, lead singer of The Smiths, famously sang that "Meat is Murder". He is right of course, but many of us still remain somewhat guilty assassins of our mammal and fish brethren.

Don't forget to visit the blogs of my fellow Tuesday Poets for more great poems and, of course, the hub of Tuesday Poem at: