Long poem by
Teppo Gren | Details |
January 1975, Mount Druitt, Sydney, Australia
At the end of 1974 high school was over, and it was time to start a new phase in life. Whether it would be a continuation of studies at University, or starting a working career would depend on the results of the Higher School Certificate. Whatever the case, finishing high school closed a chapter in my life. Carlingford high school had been a good experience for me.
At the start of the new year, I had everything going for me, except for that one thing that was nagging away at me: a deep, meaningful relationship. I was now eighteen years of age, turning nineteen in Febru-ary and I had not been kissed by a girl, or kissed a girl, since I was thirteen when I kissed with Linda. For many years I had been carrying the yearning for love: to hold someone lovingly in my arms, to caress and fondle a loved one. Looking back, I had lost my teenage years. The young love of a teenager could not be recovered. I had not experienced teenage love except in its negative form of rejection. I was total-ly naïve when it came to matters of the heart and sexuality. I had not received the education or the expe-rience received by most teenagers.
I had started work at the Penrith branch office of the Bank of New South Wales before Christmas. The banks were always looking for new young employees and for those who had completed their higher school certificate it was easy to get employed. It didn’t pay a lot, but it was a job that brought some in-come for the time being. The work was quite easy and the workmates were nice. The Penrith branch had near enough ten employees working under the supervision of the manager and the accountant who were the bosses. I was quite quick to learn whatever task I was given to do.
I had an interesting and flattering instance one day when we were having lunch in the room upstairs at the bank. One of my workmates at the bank was a young married woman perhaps a few years older than me. She started asking why I don’t have a girlfriend. She made positive comments on my looks and then continued the flattery by saying that if she wasn’t married she’d go for me. These kinds of positive comments had been long time coming. I realized that it was only a compliment and the intention was not for it to lead anywhere. It didn’t. I took the compliment at its true value. Perhaps there was still hope for me.
The job at the bank was something I wanted to do whilst waiting for the results to whether I’d be accepted to University. I had applied to a course in architecture in all the Universities that it was studied in. The first two options were a full-time four year course at Sydney University and University of New South Wales. The third option was a full-time course at the Sydney Institute of Technology and the fourth option was a part-time course over six years at the University of New South Wales.
I hadn’t applied for any other courses than the architectural courses available, so if I didn’t get accepted it would change my future plans completely, and I would need to consider making a career in banking. I received the results in middle of January and I was accepted on the part-time course at the University of New South Wales. Six years seemed a long time to study until I would graduate, but I was happy that I was able to scrape in.
At the bank they were preparing me to work as a teller. The next day after I had received notice of my acceptance to Uni, I notified the accountant and the manager at the bank that I would be leaving at the middle of February as I was accepted into University. They were very upset and said that didn’t I say at the interview that I wasn’t looking at continuing my studies. They were very disappointed and said that I could leave straight away. In essence they dismissed me on the spot. Losing the job immediately wasn’t such a big deal for me. It would’ve been nice to earn some money, but I was already looking forward to starting my archi-tecture studies, and it would be nice to have a few weeks’ break before the first semester began.
At the end of February I started studies at the University of New South Wales in Kensington. Because the course was a part-time course over six years, I had lectures only on two days of the week: on Tuesdays from 11 am to 9 pm and on Thursdays from 2 pm to 9 pm. By no means was the course easy, but I settled into studying quite well. We had a lot of exercises to do, so most of the other days I would work on them at home. Uni was different to high school. We had the freedom to attend lectures or not attend them, but if you started skipping too many classes you would quickly fall behind.
The University campus area was huge covering thirty-eight hectares of land and consisting of over sixty faculty buildings as well as open park areas. It took roughly fifteen minutes to walk from one extreme to the other. The University was one of the top Universities in Australia and the academic achievements there were well respected. The University was established in 1949 and had expanded rapidly to over twenty thousand students by the mid-seventies.
I was a Uni student at the University of New South Wales. How cool was that? I was proud of my achievement and I had everything set for me and life was going according to my dreams. Except that I was alone without a girlfriend. But I was confident that happiness would come my way soon. After all I was a pretty could catch for any girl: I was okay looking, I was smart, I was athletic, I was going to have a respected professional career, I had deep feelings, I wanted to be married and have a family. What more would a girl want? I dreamt my lifelong dream of a meaningful relationship, the ensuing bliss and happiness that would lead to marriage and children.
Copyright © Teppo Gren | Year Posted 2016
Long poem by
Gerald Dillenbeck | Details |
Do I want to only look at new ones,
never been used,
or is that a too restrictive market,
too competitively priced
for virginity of place and relationship on Earth?
And, is such redemptively-intended virginity
an asset or a deficit,
in which ways?
Could I rather shop in a wider market,
someplace more gently used
someplace with smooth natural wood and stone,
rich in character
and not the smell of fresh acrylic paint,
when I could have wisteria and roses
lavender and mint
wafting through those big brown
or hazel door and window frames.
If this prospective relationship
does not bring sanity and health and pleasure and beauty
then is that not a contract violation
and time to be thinking about separation
so Self and Others can get back into our confluent market
for a better fit with this Time;
not a decade ago?
Have my needs
and preferences changed,
while my life partner's and vocation's may feel
no more room for additions,
lack of flexible floor plan,
too big or too small?
Have I changed my definition of paradise
is not who I am still investing in.
My fellow pilgrims, and places, and their path,
seem entrenched in incompatibility.
They have grown older,
more cracks in the plaster,
wear in the not-so-natural rugs,
missing some shingles on the roof.
Does the view from outside
look more like a weedpatch,
than my intended investment in paradise?
While shopping used expands your multicultural potential,
it also brings its baggage.
All that good and/or bad karma
yours for a down payment
but not always part of what you bargain for.
Did I ask if anyone had ever been murdered here,
or how many toxic fantasies cast their shadows?
swimming in carcinogens,
tumorous habits growing mold under the roof?
What is prior experience with abuse,
Do I have a right to know, to be informed? Could I ask prior co-habitors and self-marketers with a prospective position/vocation/place/person:
Why are the two of you going your separate ways?
Was this your decision or did it feel more like
your house/spouse/employer gave you no choice?
If it was your choice,
if you have moved on
to something more to your liking,
rather than merely running away
from a smelly situation,
then what does your current relationship
by way of contentment,
with justice and beauty and health,
that is lacking in my prospective investment?
Perhaps there were reasons unrelated to your vocational satisfaction.
Maybe you couldn't afford to stay any more?
Is this place/person high maintenance, do you think?
Too heavily taxing,
bleeding you through inflated costs of living,
dispossession of responsibility
too much Win-Lose gaming?
Are there problems in the neighborhood/extended family
that I should know about?
Does the plumbing still work?
Are the lights on but nobody's home?
Would you recommend your house/spouse/job
to your best in-the-market friend?
Why or why not?
What interior and exterior landscape and design issues
did you have?
What did you find were your interior and exterior relational strengths
for future development?
Knowing what you have learned
through your own investment experience,
who do you think would be the ideal partner
for this former place now in my face?
Too much information, or appropriate responsibility to be informed
of which economic and political incarnations we embrace?
Copyright © Gerald Dillenbeck | Year Posted 2015
Long poem by
T Wignesan | Details |
all the multifarious ways of being savvy earnest
of show-looking in earnest
of believing in earnestness
of wanting to be thought of in earnest
by being read thumbed
scrutinised listened to in silence
who shores up whose image
« when the feeling comes, I feel the need to go » …
looking into the guest with devouring Picasso eyes
and yet his image bothered him
his need to be felt useful needed
to be thought of as in the know
no background to lay the usual foundation
Ecole des Beaux Arts
Atelier in the Rue des Augustins
no one to lean on to
only the self-peddled jazz piano a lolling pittance
and the loud lingering death at the Maison des Artistes
canvasses stached away at some brocanteur’s junkyard
it matters to leave behind a corpus
a bibliography firsthand original right from the tréfonds
long before death
the diurnal deaths
felled by dizzy spells
some ex-librarian’s list of secondary source pieces
articles talks opening-day speeches conferences radio-interviews
tv declarations chapters-in-books edited revised --editions reviews biblios
tertiary lists of critiques
unsigned TLS reviews communications
what the editor said in memoirs of his peers
not to have said enough is not enough
there will be those who will attribute what others have said to us
we have made provision for that
we told so and so what the others have taken from us
with a word carefully placed in the leeward of the ear
while sitting in the din of the rear seat words garbled gobbled by the exhaust beat
to have left behind a load
heavy with prizes pounds royalties titles
by the dozens even scores
definitive recapitulative editions in velours
computerised translations transvesti(t)es
through years of solitude sans sexe sans joie sans care may the publisher be
forever loading to jettison
the heavier the corpus the longer/longslower
the worm rot in the
mud catacombs of staring accusing
From the privately-pub. coll. (rev. 2016) : longhand notes (a binding of poems), Paris : 1999, 115p.
© T.Wignesan - Paris
Fresnes, November 6, 1994
Copyright © T Wignesan | Year Posted 2016
Long poem by
Cmack Estevez | Details |
Don’t throw it away
I never had lots of people that actually believed in me as a kid . I always had these delusional thoughts that one day everybody would love me and believe in me. Well it came eventually to this day when I left poverty forever. I always wanted to be this to be that but it was all talk . Someone use to tell me if you want to be somebody you’re going to put the effort , be discipline and work your way up. The ego the cockiness the arrogance and the ignorance will destroy you instantly and you’ll feel very heartless in your heart. Never throw it away over those traits never, listen and feel emotion that you think the people are right and don’t believe in you that you can be something. Your dreams , Your opportunities , Your hopes , Your passion and you being a somebody is all on you to make it come true. There’s no easy path I always tracked it down all my life and I fail every time it takes patients it takes efforts it takes to have another plan another opportunity to search what you want. The world can’t help you you are helping yourself the world can’t owe you. It doesn’t define you , you do. You can taking it if the world don’t owe something and give something to you easily but you might fail. There’s no excuses for you to say you have talent you have lots of creativity and you’ll feel in your thick minding skull that if you use it for an easier path then the world will make you feel embarrassed and humiliated.
Without a plan
Without hard work
You fall you throw it all away based on just talent you can’t be build and rely on talent and creativity to be successful and make it. Every human has it not just you. Ego and being cocky destroys your images it kills your chances. Be patient Persevere your way to greatness. Search and feel the effort by doing the work use your mind have a plan use your full potential because if you don’t then your dreams will remain a fantasy and not a reality. The world wants us to face our challenges to overcome and improve. Without it we all collapse. WE all need challenges to improve our ethics and talent. If you throw it all away then what’s the point of being a somebody ? Young people need to understand that talent creativity having an ego and being so better than the world and better than everybody and the world will be much very easier on you is actually more to it. Don’t let this destroy you because if you don’t believe in yourself then you’ll never be good enough . If certain people don’t believe you have a good future then ignore them and chase it. The struggle is real but we can overcome it by making the struggle into our dreams turn into reality of our wants and highly doubts of desire.
If you throw it away you’re losing
If you throw it away you’re pointless.
If you throw it away you’re hopeless.
And if you throw it away you won’t be good enough to be a somebody.
Stay in school be patient it’ll come get the amount of education and work hard you just have to focus and feel the pride of greatness within you to improve and lastly chase it and go get it.
Copyright © Cmack Estevez | Year Posted 2016
Long poem by
Andrew Crisci | Details |
In his wealthy days, he looked down
on homeless people and disgusted by their
stench, he cried out, " Take a warm bath! "
He kept on walking fixing his black hat
tossed upward by a capricious, wild wind.
He dressed well and passerby admired him,
he turned many ladies heads with his stylish
Armani dark suit and Gucci dark sunglasses.
but older guys stared at him with much envy:
he was in his early sixties, but looked younger.
A hungry man sensing his greed shouted,
" Sir, do you have a dollar to buy me coffee? "
" Filthy bum, you are too lazy to get a job! "
He replied with much indignation in his voice.
" I was like you wearing the best suits money
could buy, then I lost my job on Wall Street!
I am forced to beg...where is human kindness? "
He spoke those words with great bitterness.
He wasn't moved by what he had heard
and muttered, " They are all the same,
freeloaders fooling idiots who give them
dollars and they in turn buy cigarettes
and alcohol; who is the clever one?
Months passed and the homeless guy
still begged, some gave him quarters
and dollars, others kept on walking;
he didn't see that stylish gentleman
who despised his condition and insulted
him with nasty looks and unkind words,
where had he gone? He had to ask somebody.
" I think I saw him today on Lexington Avenue."
A passerby shouted running to the subway.
The teen told him he lost all he had
when the Stock Market dropped to its
lowest in August, another Black Tuesday,*
then he pointed where he was laying,
" He's on next block in a cardboard box! "
The homeless man deeply wondered.
He got up, went to take a shower
and put on a suit somebody gave
to him along with black shades;
He looked very rich, everyone was
impressed by his attire, and best
of all, he smelled good: he was alive.
" Good morning, Sir, can I offer you
anything, coffee and a hot hero *? "
He asked him by hiding his identity.
" Yes, please...I haven't eaten in days! "
Nobody is showing mercy, they look
away if I were a sewer rat looking for
food on this sidewalk of cuisine smell."
" Wait, I will right back with your food!
He ran across the busy avenue and
returned with a bag full of sweet cakes
and a pastrami hero; the coffee steamed
in the chilly afternoon, it seemed a
Manhattan' street giving off puffs of stream
from under the sewers during Fall and winter.
" Thank you for your kindness, kind man! "
The once-rich-man said to the stranger,
he seemed sorry as if his greedy heart had
had found underserved generosity which
he himself had denied...remembering how
desperate that man was when he asked
for money to get coffee and stay warm.
* A Hero is a New York or New Jersey
* Black Tuesday happened on October 29, 1929
Copyright © Andrew Crisci | Year Posted 2016
Long poem by
Carol Eastman | Details |
The HR person called me in… I was turning gray… Was he even twenty-one?
I wondered if the interview would go well, as he did fung shui the chairs around.
Offered a caramel expresso mocha late decaf, I told him I took my coffee black.
Alas my friend, it got progressively worse, this: our proverbial generational gap.
He asked me to explain, how I’d be the best personnel fit, for this illustrious job.
Ah! Experience I had in abounds, as I pulled out a 100-page resume, neatly bound.
That question, had me off and running, but I knew, I was in some trouble when…
I saw his eyes glaze over, and he ask me, ‘Have we made it into space yet?’
He smirked, when he ask, about ‘Recent’ applicable education, in the last 5 years.
I condensed my course certifications till he nearly fell off, his crazy chair, my dear!
He ask the projects worked on, unfortunately, all were government secret classified.
So I added some of the numerous skills, that had been applied, till he almost cried.
I started with the job descriptions, but he didn’t like… that the names were so long.
And the abbreviations normally used, in this line of work, almost blew his mind.
Though I also got the feeling, he may have thought that I’d finally, lost mine, since…
My accomplishments had scads of stuff he’d never, ever, be able to comprehend...
You know, ‘things’ about the job, HR doesn’t care about or bother to be clued in.
Luckily all was saved, before the interviewers’ jaw, hit the floor around his chair.
Using a power point presentation, illustrations appeared, giving him a better clue.
I even gave him a burned DVD, set to the music of ‘Live Free or Die Hard’, too.
He ask about items, he’d never heard of, you know, from way before he was born.
But got the feeling he’d be more attentive, talking about a computer game going on.
I didn’t lie about a thing, it’s not my fault some Companies are now closed down!
But I felt things were somewhat a success, as security finally came to lead me out…
Unfortunately, in the end, they hired a young one, and I couldn’t understand why.
He was a quiet, little, studious kid, who didn’t say a thing, but had stars in his eyes.
He didn’t understand any of the work involved, but his pay would be next to none.
But that's whom they got: until that company closed for work that couldn’t be done.
All because the HR Department didn't help them get the workers they did need.
I became self-employed, developing computer games, all the rage! Oh So Sweet!
Yes, I became a millionaire, with my own company, without HR, anywhere seen!
Now, we develop rockets to go into space, where I felt, that HR person should be.
Dedicated to all those Middle aged people stressed out after looking for a job.
Wife and Hubby Collaboration
Copyright © Carol Eastman | Year Posted 2013
Long poem by
Katie Pukash | Details |
They call me hairdresser, hairstylist, barber,
but really I am just a therapist with shears in my hands and the ability to cut memories out of peoples orbits.
Donna says she has twenty seven great-grandchildren,
and six kids.
She tells me that her late husband died,
and that if I cut her hair too short she will wring my neck.
She calls me superhero.
Dustie tells me about her child passing,
that the autopsy couldn’t tell why,
just a selfish god wanted her precious to be with him instead of her.
I don’t cry.
I try not to fill the shampoo suds with salt tears.
I try not to use the tape in my pocket to keep me together,
but sometimes I need it when I bite the bitter from my fingernails.
The cut hair sticks to my leggings-
their stories itching away at me.
I try not to cradle their shortcomings in my cereal spoon,
try not to feel guilty if my advice doesn’t take,
try not to kill the blue jays,
or miss the sunrise.
I try not to forget their names,
or their fingers,
but I will never forget their stories.
Cut me like an a-line
because I am asymmetrical to their words.
Listening but forgetting.
Sweeping up the hair and moving on,
always snip, sweep, snip, sweep,
dust off my shoulders and I’m back up again.
Glass house salon chair,
I hold their hair at a ninety degree angle.
They sink in the seat
always looking back at me.
180 degree angle, modified ninety,
texture with razor but don’t cut off the length of their stories.
Remember their fingers.
Remember their formulas for changing.
Remember their eye color and the size of their pupils,
the way they look when they talk to you.
Remember to take notes like Marilee’s hair is resistant and takes a longer time to process.
Remember the process,
the hilite weave,
the caramels, golds, coppers, blondes.
Remember their voices,
the stable and shaky and cracked and firm.
Remember to snip, sweep, snip, sweep,
dust off your shoulders and get back up again.
I’ve got to sit up straight,
grip the watermelons,
eat the pepper seeds,
tame the lions.
I have to crawl when the soles of my feet are covered in sorrows
And my knees harbor hopes for holding me up,
joining my joints together,
connecting me from floor to foot, to stomach, to lung, to heart, to heart, to dust off your shoulders and get back up again.
Donna comes in again, for a perm this time.
She walks slowly to the salon chair.
My stomach is hollow.
I weep into my lungs.
As I begin to put on my suit she looks up at me
and says, “Hello, Superhero.”
Copyright © Katie Pukash | Year Posted 2014
Long poem by
Jack Nganga | Details |
The first thing I remember hearing
Was a car radio with a country song playing
A man singing while my mom was steering
A song about heartache and pain
That’s the day the good boy in me died
When you sang “Mama tried”
Country singers come and go
Old songs hang the airwaves and are hardly played
But you put on the best show
People still listen to everything you said
You were a Grand Ole Opry member
Helping people make it through December
Country music would not have done without your voice
You sang small shows and large concerts
You were everyone’s number one choice
You wore different kind of hats, sang from your heart and won hearts
The singing side of a fighter
The fighting side of a songwriter
You jumped freight trains and crossed highways
Kept the wrong company and robbed stores
You were soon to discover crime never pays
When in prison you were tossed
You could have escaped but decided not to leave
You were tired of being a lonesome fugitive
No more freight trains leaving town
For now they put you in San Quentin
But they could not keep you down
For you were good with the pen and not quitting
Soon you would be famous from Muskogee to Rome
After you sang them back home
One day you were free, the tide turned
You took up a guitar, someone gave you a chance
You wrote songs from things in life you had learned
Your songs became hits and not just once
Soon you would become a legend in your own right
Like the legend of Bonnie and Clyde
Wasn’t long before Nashville would admit
That you were as good if not better than Jimmie Rodgers
When you reached country music’s summit
No more working man blues; you had your own bus
Traveling all over the North American blue skies
No more staring at your mama's hungry eyes
Every time am down I play your records
And get that old time rambling fever
I wish i had seen one show to contribute applauds
I wish i had swam next to you at Kern River
Just like you and your ex-wives, am nobody’s fool
I've got swinging doors a jukebox and a bar stool
You got better along the years
Country music changed; not your songs
You still stood out among your peers
You still sang to collect society’s wrongs
Now you’re gone, you took that last freight train
But today i started loving you again
Are the good times really over?
As you go to the last big city
Say hello to George Jones if he is sober
Hope we can hold on to your pal old Willie
He is the last old man from the mountain I think
And I think he will now just stay here and drink
Copyright © Jack Nganga | Year Posted 2016
Long poem by
Amit Ray | Details |
Otto`s life is not
Grue is his banner
left by his
blue-eyed Brit mom
left long by one of
those hated South
His guilty pleasures
in Green Street have
no recognition like
many such Aussies in
Yet he shovels the
stake of hatred and
As if sheer pain as
tears digged large
A pineapple in
search of an apple
lurking in the dark
reality of snark and
A noir youth
So is his life-an
hackneyed into codes
they call secularism
His way melds
through smog hogs he
hoggard for heydays
eats grief, drinks
Flowers though bloom
on his washed soil
and again bailiffs
Anacronym to London
No star and no moon
and no jack in the
trade that allured
From marijuana to
cocaine he manscaped
Years unheard he
found at last his
living with his
Andalusian mare in
the city of angels
undermined him once
are now just
mere dissidents of
from cartrels in
Cuba to brothels in
to escorts in
Dominican his blood
strengthened in the
verizon of Panama
Enter the new duel
from drugs to
though he remained
dormant in all those
and long drive for
Though warned and
jailed and derailed
a few times from Sao
Paolo to San Antonio
Unfazed a prophetic
man for some
he found new breasts
to grab somebody -a
his broken glass
Women are always
announced him in
Moscow after a trail
of long bellowing
Mistaken and misled
Chillax mood in
Russian vodka and
Austrian redbull and
A highwayman is he
now way away his
breath from their
In New York he bonks
in those trader`s
Brunch with Japan
and now a doting
father of two
Beyond every hatred
what started a
Thanksgivukkah and a
regular blogger in
Copyright © Amit Ray | Year Posted 2014
Long poem by
Rhoda Monihan | Details |
His hand reached out to mine, open,
Holding it, I smiled, our eyes danced with understanding,
Form and blush outlined his expectations,
But I could see that there may be fear inside.
Mary restated their predicament,
That the child was born out with the marriage bond,
And that people were swaying to the opposite side,
And course dialogue, laughter and spitting were norm.
So I asked the two for their thoughts and predictions,
About the child, if he perhaps could be like, special?
And they specified that he would cure, heal and exorcise,
And also promised that they’d talk to him about the poor.
Could this baby be the messiah?
I pondered and hoped in their certainty;
Was this the predicted son of god?
He would be free from aggressive victimisation,
If we could just name him as god's son.
So I suggested to his parents,
That if the wise men came with a quest,
To accept the name Jesus Christ,
And certify the census, no less.
Freedom for some is in lying,
When there’s no possible alternatives,
But I believe Joseph never lied,
In the population census of Bethlehem,
That just so happened to pass by.
The baby hadn’t been named,
Only the parents last name was changed,
Made credible for interaction,
For currency and ware to be exchanged.
The child would have been suppressed by all,
Assumed to be dirty and unclean,
Not for chat or dialogue,
And certainly not for work in a trade of his call,
Or for work in any trade for that matter.
Nothing would ever have been done,
The poor would never have been healed,
Or not so quickly for sure in history;
The government would not have been rifled,
And Christ would not have come.
Treating the poor for health problems,
Would have come through government legislation,
A long time after Christ,
In an austere, aloof manner.
People to people relationships,
Would not have been respected,
If care had been awarded top-down,
By bureaucrats and officials:
As supervisors of the protected.
Society at that time was narrow minded,
Stuck in traditional religion;
There were outcasts, sinners, infectious people,
And assumptions were remedial and red:
There were no special people,
No exceptions to the rule,
Only one place for the messiah confided.
One baby matters to me,
A life should be saved at any cost and risk,
Because the abilities you show when young,
Shouldn’t be muffled or labeled regressive,
But nurtured in acceptance and love.
Copyright © Rhoda Monihan | Year Posted 2015