Google+ Followers

Saturday, November 06, 2004

The Quick Dark

I've been tidying up lately - trying to calm the tidal wave of paper and magazines and books which has built up over my life. & I've found a few poems published in magazines and out of the way places that I'd forgotten I had written. It is a strange feeling ... I don't like all of them, of course, and can see why I have neglected some of them - but a couple struck me as at least 'fun'. Here's one such poem. It is dedicated to a little lady with a huge amount of energy - she worked her own path through outback towns and farming communities, running writing workshops and literary readings, charging her own fees as she went before such things were funded by the powers that be (or sometimes are). When the local arts department got involved and taxpayer money was officially attached to the projects (about three trips a year, north, south, east - west of here is all ocean), I won a couple of trips with her. This poem came from one of those.

The Quick Dark
for Ethel Webb

Seven poems in as many hours
evening comes in so quickly

children want to eat so I
feed the cat first poems

still humming I can’t sit I
gibber and sing the moon is

rising full I fill with
kinship the ecstasy of

writing all afternoon and I
remember Ethel saying to

schoolchildren in red dusty
outback towns ‘It gets dark

so quickly when the writing
comes on you’ their faces

open as paddock gates


published in Fremantle Arts Review Vol 6 No 11 November 1991

No comments: