Words

Stop Trying to Make Sense of This (Life)

At the entrance to the train station,

a Jehovah’s witness one side,

a Morman at the other,

both trying to save my soul,

one booklet at a time,

while emails fly in to my pocket

offering better interest rates

and great deals on airfares.

 

The news tells me

that a virus is spreading

and floods have replaced the fires,

I guess the blood dimmed tide

has indeed been loosed,

and innocence replaced

by ignorance.

 

But if you try the impeach the guilty,

who are racked not with remorse

but a nuclear sense of entitlement,

then I’ll refer you back to distract;

soul to soul, airfares

and interest rates.

 

Unattributed moulding fixed to wall near Central Station, Sydney, NSW, Australia, 9 June 2015.

Look on the bright side,

we’re all bound to die.

Then ask yourself a question,

what will you leave behind?

It’s easier to be a churchgoer

than a good Christian.

 

Words

Crack

This image first appeared on Instagram

This poem was first published in Make Your Mark, Issue 7, March 2015

Subsequently published in The Frequency of God, Close-Up Books, December 2017

Words

Would I Become Prometheus?

Written While Watching Notre Dame Burning

 

If I had a time machine

The Notre Dame cathedral in Paris on fire, April 15th, 2019. Photo credit Thierry Mallet AP REX Shutterstock

I could travel to Paris

to just before the fire broke

in Notre Dame,

I’d tell the Parisians

I’d travelled back from the future

to warn them,

and people would know

that a fire was about to start

and they’d be prepared.

 

But then someone would say

“my son died in a car accident last week,

can you take us back

so that I can stop him from going out?”

 

And someone else would say

“my mum died from cancer last year,

can you take us back so that I can

tell her I love her?”

 

Someone would want to go back

to September 10, 2001,

someone would want to kill Hitler,

or warn Abraham Lincoln.

 

And back further;

the Reformation,

the Spanish Inquisition.

 

And all the dead would return

and ask to see their ancestors

and tell me about wars

that they had fought.

 

Someone would want to meet Jesus.

 

How far would I

be asked to go back?

Would I have to invent the wheel,

or demonstrate fire?

Would I become Prometheus?