Collision on Winthrop Avenue

It isn’t just the impact
that shocks.

It’s the violence
of the sound
exploding your reveries.

It’s the surprise
of your car spinning
and others whizzing past.

It’s the vehicle
facing oncoming traffic.

It’s the surprise
of children’s workbooks
strewn across lanes
colouring-in weeping in soft drizzle.

It’s the insistence
of the blaring horn
refusing to be silenced
and the door that won’t open.

It’s the surprise
of what might have been.

Rita Tognini (Western Australia)



So let’s say
we’re centaurs

& in front
we keep a face

a place
to land

if someone’s

while behind
we go for what

we can get
& as for love

& death while
we’re ripe

they run

along for the ride

Laurinda Lind (USA)
First published in Afterthoughts (London, ON, Canada, 1997)


The waiting

‘My lungs burst
like fire in dry grass.
You are scarred from rib to rib 
and it looks like a smile.

It’s loud when the moon’s out —
the dancing branches shake 
blossoms from the trees.

We were gentle when the night fell 
like eventual rain
and we slept like curled dogs 
our hearts jumping at the night owls
and all the birds sleeping.

I called you in the gum drenched dark
and you were just a shiver,
so I warmed myself 
on the curve of your spine.
I can bear it more 
if we feel real.’

Kirsty Oehlers (Western Australia)


Sneaky Piggely

I’m the sneaky piggely
I always steal the capsicum
And when the big alpha piggelys come
I pretend to be retarded

I’m the sneaky piggely
I pretend to be normal but it never works
And when the big alpha piggelys come
I pretend to be dead

I’m the sneaky piggely
I steal the corn leaves and hide in a box
And none of you big alpha piggelys are going to stop me
‘Cos I pretend to be sad

I’m the sneaky piggely
I’m disabled and dysfunctional
Please love me alpha piggely
I wish I knew more tricks

Timothy Parkin (Western Australia)
First published on the author's blog


The Clairvoyant

The clairvoyant never explains his gift,

how he comes to see what he sees,
how flashes of vision, insight, intuition

coalesce into a divining rod to point

in one direction or another,
how far they take him from himself.

His art is not science, not forensic,

not often reliable. When he closes
his eyes he sees cloud-mist,

he sees a veil he must lift or pierce,

and beyond the veil a clue, a locket,
a tuft of hair, a red sweater, a map,

a missing child’s body, hidden or visible

amongst a jumble of discarded items,
a woman’s heartache, a man’s bewilderment.

David Adès (South Australia)

Cover of book Afloat in Light
David's new book
Read an extract / buy


Public announcement

If you have been affected
by the contents of this drama
well that’s the point of art
isn’t it? If, however, you are
unmoved, then a helpline is available
to discuss how you might develop
your ability to empathise with others.
Calls are charged at the local rate.

Andrew Turner (UK)



Performed at GLITTER, Spoken Word Perth, May 2016 @ Paper Mountain Gallery

friend’s message on facebook reveals her disguise
of sexual pureness, a fabrication of lies
that hides the pain of consent stripped away
the horror that resides in her everyday

and I feel it, the pain of a past you can’t speak
the shudders in shop fronts, the shuffling of feet
subtly avoiding any spaces of fear
silent shadows, sharp corners, the stench of cheap beer

on another’s mouth, or another’s skin
innocent intoxication turned sinister grin
that snarls through nightmares, alone in her bed
his hands always present, always there in her head

former frame of fluidity reduced to regret
hip bones, now haunted, the site of lament
rib cage protrudes from translucent skin
starvation an escape from the body she’s in

my body is a prison, my body is a crime scene
my body is a puzzle and I don’t know what it means
my body isn’t mine, my body isn’t home
my body is broken and the cure remains unknown

I’m messaging my friend, she’s too far away to hold
I want to tell her it gets better, not each season is this cold
but my strength still shivers and my palms are turning pale
haunted by the malice which the human race entails

patriarchy perpetuates the purpose of penetration
as proving your penis has power past procreation
but my body is no piñata and there is no prize
for whoever hits it hard enough, whoever parts my thighs

she was asking for it
asking for it
asking for

I was asking for it
asking for it
asking for


Maddie Godfrey (Western Australia / UK)
Facebook: maddiegodfreypoet

From Maddie's zine Warm

Amateur Pole Queen

Poem page from zine
From Maddie's zine Warm

do not think about failure,
remember that even stars fall sometimes
and when they do, people wish on them

Maddie Godfrey (Western Australia / UK)
Facebook: maddiegodfreypoet

From Maddie's zine Warm