Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Five or six poems

from w
I am tired of hearing the phrase Oh my God or seeing OMG in texts so I wrote this poem mainly using found words in an essay from the President of the Uniting Church in Australia and some lines from a dictionary. 
The title is of course OMG.

A teenage girl talks on her mobile phone. 
“O my God”, she insists, hardly creatively, 
leaping with words she misunderstands.
The acronym/phrase OMG (Oh My God!) 
I hear it see it everywhere in texts, 
e-mails, on television, even when
surprised by joy of seeing a room renovated.
Hands on face. The Urban Dictionary, says,
OMG is used repeatedly by people shocked, 
inserted into every conversation.
The OMG girl on the train is still ranting.
My God, me, my, always about me, 
where I am at the centre of the universe.
Others use OMG about a relational understanding 
of the G in OMG, would not use this phrase lightly.
Certainly that was the case in olden days.
May it please thee, O my eternal God, almighty …
ln modern day, the acronym might be OMEGA. 
Omega (capital: Ω, lowercase: ω; Greek Ωμέγα) 
the 24th and last letter of the Greek alphabet.
Literally great O" (ō mega, meaning 'great’
as opposed to o micron, which means "little O." )
I occasionally bump into the one God 
or the one God bumps into me,
I can exclaim OMEGA. Be surprised, amazed 
by the last letter of the Greek alphabet ( Ω, ω )
"I am the alpha and the omega" 
(Koiné Greek: "ἐγὼ τὸ Α καὶ τὸ Ω"), 
an appellation of Jesus in the Book of Revelation, 
the symbol suggested by the Apocalypse, 
the First and the Last" the beginning and the end.
Now that would be a surprise to exclaim about.

Here is the second poem for Geelong writers in a series for five days.
Reading the Age with her glasses off, 
the myopia gives her clarity up close. 
She is astonished to see 
the texture of skin on her hands.
It is like filo pastry 
or the skin of a turtle.
Inside the skin though
she is only eighteen.
The past is still there, 
the recollection of lilac,
murmur of familiar voices, 
the wind in the casuarina, 
the chattering of nesting birds. 
the recollection of things past
more real than the Twinings tea-bag 
discarded on the Vietnamese saucer.

Day Three of poems - two more to go. 
A sonnet for a Diva

One day I received a postcard from Venice. I never got to Venice, or Paris, or Madrid, though I had planned to - many years ago. I only got as far as Fiji and the South Pacific. However, after all the novels, films and travel pictures, I feel I've been there.
I wrote this sonnet one day after Fay White, a songwriter and singer, told us a story about an opera singer in Venice. It was the kind of poem that just wrote itself and I didn't have to change many words at all. Other times writing is painstakingly slow.
I had in mind the kind of music in the 1981 French film 'Diva' and have read this poem with a background of an aria from La Wally.
Diva’s Sonetto
The gleaming vortex of water is my nightmare.
I lean from palazzo windows, pain in flood,
intent upon another death in Venice and dare
the Bridge of Sighs to be marbled in my blood.
The pin pricks of stars reflect, a prelude
not a finale, as the sky fates so amaze.
An aria I’ll sing, with a shift in mood.
Sounds resonate into canals and courtyard haze
and one by one gondoliers gather in their way
until there’s a listening, then a sudden applause.
I change my intention, then early next day
a bouquet and basket are placed near my doors.
A note, ‘Grazie Diva, here’s roses and wine
for our beloved, the bearer of fire divine.’

Day Four of poems. Here's another nostalgia kind of poem.
Colour my World
I connected with colour at Victoria market,
pressed oil pastels fiercely into the cartridge, 
made clusters of German sausage,
cubist cheeses, curling Matisse leaves. 
I was a Fauve, a wild thing.
Framed some, others became lost,
gave many drawings away. 
Relatives remarked behind manicured hands, 
‘Why doesn’t she paint gum trees, pretty mountains?’ 
Others accepted the gifts with good manners
but one golden scene based on the Trentham tip
was coldly hung on a toilet door.
A disconnect with the pastel light of Paris
as the South Pacific beckoned. 
I asked questions - who am I,
where did I come from, where am I going, 
at an exhibition in Canberra, 
entitled the Impressionists, 
though it did include Gauguin, (who was post), 
I was let down - his colours dull. 
The art books had lied.
It's Day Five of writing poems on Facebook, so here are two small poems, one on grief, one on a half-life. 
A half-life
He lived in and out of the lives of other people,
a voyeur, his energetic mind focussed 
on others’ stories and frailties. 
He never dared to examine his own mind, 
yet he realized this was not the way to live,
but how can you break the pattern 
of being a do-gooder, 
a bleeding heart, 
a pillar of the community?

When the body freezes
Death had broken into her life, 
weals scarred every moment. 
She could not read, 
could not write thank you letters. 
Her body did not want to move 
as a kind of paralysis set in, 
breathing minimal. 
The weight of sky was not
the usual softness of light rain.
Sharp noises cut into the room 
as others in the household went about tasks, 
ignoring her need for silence.
The sudden scrape of a chair
or spurt of a stove were hammers.
I had written a poem about a priest in a Mallee town (not Peceli) who just seemed mismatched with the community.

The stump-jump plough lies rusting
near hard Mallee roots,
knotted and dark-red as dried blood,
a mound where the dust settles
after a storm rolls in.

In the town the priest puts away golf-clubs,
genuflects before he sits down
at the mahogany desk to write,
“Now who can tell me the way to Babylon?’

These are hard dry people
used to dry hard times,
immoveable as mallee roots,.
Dare he jump over them 
as the plough did
in earth-breaking days?

He is city soft, cushioned as thistledown,
or occasionally a tumbling thorn-bush
swept by the North wind.
Mismatched, they pass one another.


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