Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Moonshine - Kate Jennings

Yesterday I was sick, sick
in the head,
panic and paranoia,
it's been like that for years, used to say
I was a victim or the victim.
I'm gettin' older now
so I put myself to bed, filled myself
with pills and, after a while,
floated quietly asleep.
Today I feel all right.
(Although I wanted to cry for help,
cry out to you,
it's not that I'm a clinging female,
it's just that I'm ill).

Oh but he comes on tender,
the fucker.
He's a lizard,
he's a lizard with a serrated tail
rasping his way
through a fancy dancing poetess.
Caring and love have
become blood and semen spattered
and coagulated all over
my abused body and my gothic imagination

I remember My friends,
let me tell you bout them,
And I say, and I meant to say and what
could I have said?
I'm not bitter,
I've just got many reasons to sing the blues

                                                               *****

In the movies
you huddle into the corner of your seat
and flinch, withdrawing your arm,
when I touch you, familiarly, as a friend;
a gesture calculated to make you comfortable

"Where did you go on your holidays?"
"It was cold and quiet at Captain's Flat ..."

I thought you fragile, and wanted so much to
hold you, comfort you.
But who was I to offer unsolicited affection
my eyelids swollen
my body thick and lumpy with a
tranquilized tiredness? We sat
in the sunlight eating sandwiches and apples.
I was ugly in the sunlight.

Kate Jennings (born 1948) Australia

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