Tuesday, 22 April 2014


A Refrain

Half-finished books lie everywhere
Hard drive printed visions commemorated and listed
Unclean dishes, garbage, money and immoveables
Cavalcades, green river sounds
Breathing in silence
The sound of one’s internal organs
Makes one mad
Hair on the flooded bathroom floor
Water dripping dropping, rapping onto the gas heater
Dust and grease and negligence
Movies and music and videogames and the internet
And a fridge full of cheap leftover beer

Two weeks ago
I didn’t know recurring dreams
Five nights ago
I didn’t want to wake up
I’m coming home from something
I don’t know what
The sky is perpetual purple twilight
Journey almost over the skyline
I’m with so many people
Each of them happy
In their own way

Stopped for the night
And I’m making love to someone
Each time it’s someone else I know
A young naked man comments on his foreskin
And compliments my own
Eager to steal my virginity
His chest against my back
Growing harder with every tug
Blankets over a heavy sleeper
The taste of curiosity
Stranger than any drug
From years of familiarity

A different place, another familiar face
She hugs me like she missed me
And I missed her
So much
Even though I know we both still hate each other
Not even a texted Merry Christmas
Small fingers and smooth skin
Pubic hair wet and matted
Driving north by northwest
Into the tunnel
Naked limbs wrapped tightly, snugly
Don’t you dare let me go

In a hole in the ground
There lived a humble creature
She lived on nostalgic comfort
Translated into happiness and sadness quiet both
Expressed in brief expositions and masturbation
When I make love to her
The new fish in the river
Recalling past lives like a hopper
Laying bare in the windowed warmth of the winter sun
Clothes strewn like discarded manuscript pages
She makes no noise
Does not grasp me
Does not come
But stares out the window
In anticipation of something elusive

The group I am in
Have each all of us accomplished something
I don’t know what
The irreligious choir sings over and over
“Jesus’ blood never failed me yet”
In tumescent triumph and convalescence
A dear distant friend
He weeps with happiness
The mouse that fell in with bandits
Walk away
Strings over the watery oak sweetly urged
I am happier than I have ever been
Sincerely, K.V.

Take a minute
To consider your achievement
Flirting with friends
Breaking bread over a game of chess
Her shining face echoes
When she hugs me from behind
As I stare aimlessly into the sink
Angry and afraid and in tears
I never looked back, turned, returned
An irreplaceable warmth
Only hovering kiss
Points of light fade from me

Six and a half hours later
Reel snaps and sleep lapses
Morning against covers missing someone beautiful
Missing something I’ve never had
Nothing against an old coot like babbling Brooks
Coddled and warm in an empty room
Dreams of the coast
And old friends’ hands
Wine by the port to drench the clouds
From a hilltop somewhere south of here

by Campbell Calverley


They told me 
You can never get lost in the valley 
When at the same time 
The ride represents past hydes 
Negligences, but 
Most commonly, boxed motormouth spit 
Fame, beauty, kind and lonely 
The tome that knows alone 
Is only grown, but never sown 
Squish to the brain pan 
Bent and twisted catchphrases 
Sent, he missed his matchmakers 
End to kiss his satchelbreakers 
A very long goodbye 
Like the clouded sky 
Puffs dry until his next high 
Takes the easy road home 
Like moss on a rolling stone 

Daybreak longer than moments of kisses 
Burst out, hands in 
Choir cold and phosphorescent 
Illumine vines around His word 
Cough braggart and boast 
A man wrote it, you can tell: 
Bold, bombastic, pleasant 
With enough self-pity 
To look innocent 
While his guts pour out his hands 
And into the sea 
You represent your origin 
Mother country town people skin 
Cry out for fresh blood 
Fresh horses, fresh oysters 
And fresh milk 

Inside another passage 
Pinky warm worm and full of blood 
Caress and pinch and puncture 
Out sacs, voluptuous sculptures 
On display in an art gallery 
A box of noise in silence 
Mute moans in the dark 
Carving out the sutras 
Affix sutures to the wounds 
Like glaze around a window pane 
Hurting since birth 
A common complaint 
From these parts too 
Onto a lounge floor 
Breaking into a laughing song 
Spirit remember me not 
Sinners, hear ye this 
And feel clean again 

Like you come to the island 
And had a holiday 
Snow don’t freeze you blue 
Sleep and no cars disturb you 
But comprehend ye not 
Your understanding as luminous beings 
If you stay long enough 
I am the sink that will not drain 
A friend that taunts the animals 
A vagrant thought 
But don’t be fooled 
We lonely here mostly too 
Like a moment of a spring noon 
A spin of colour curling the horizon 
With ribbons streamed behind it 
Bearing the words 
This is not a kite

by Campbell Calverley


Baroque tones through slow watery smoke 
In a blurred-blue void 
Development temporarily suspended 
And regarded as a point of frequent return 
Formless falling 
No conscience, nothing to act on 
Just softly swaying 
Like a moment of weary wakefulness 
On a lazy morning 

Regulated body temperature 
Drifting in another direction 
Sitting in a tin can 
A sun-proof suit 
Explosive bolts 
And a sturdy visor 
Between you and nothing at all 
Gradual muscle loss 
If left hanging for too long 
Flashes of light 
Radiation hallucination 

Brisbane, Australia 
Dunedin after December 
Darker sun-soaking clothes 
Pulled away from the cold 
Keep yourself out of the rain, 
Little mouse 
Born and bred into not that much 
Accustomed to unproductive mornings 
Especially before school 
Don’t bother none 

(If you can call it that) 
In moment before life 
Coddled little hatchling 
If it’s wanted 
Organic contentedness 
Not yet become curiosity 
That’ll come with time 
If all goes well

by Campbell Calverley


Crown for the dethroned 
Chalk stones down the garden path 
A bound from root to branch bark 
Old friends among the strings 
See the boy 
See the water fell 
Like shadows on his face 

Feather rain dappling down 
Waiting for the sunset 
Sinless child 
Rests as with the cousin of death 
Sun curving honey paintbrush strokes 
Like the kissing leaves 
Sharing the silence quietly 

It need not be said 
All the troublesome foibles 
Disappear as echoes 
Through a lazy day 
How terribly strange

by Campbell Calverley


I’m searching for my Walden.
I know it isn’t here,
But the pond laps the pebbles
And draws me ever near.

I’m searching for the woods
And the quiet of the morn.
There’s no path that can take me,
Yet there I must sojourn.

In Walden where the water cool
Bathes my face with light.
Where the grass is fresh and dewy
And the blackbird soft alights.

Words spring up like the flowers,
Unbidden, brought by rain,
Kissed tenderly by the sun
To fall to earth again.

The writer may have peace there
Beside the fountain bright.
He may be alone, not lonely,
And be a merry wight.

This is no Eden green,
Nor paradise for pure.
This is the haunt of poets,
And there they may endure.

Yes, I’m searching for my Walden,
I know it is not here.
But I must continue onward;
For Walden, it is near.

by Maura Reagan

Road Signs

I have met you walk- 
ing with hat in hand, your 
bright hair gleam- 
ing, eyes shin- 
ing, with every -ing 
in every inch of you 
move-ing, sing-ing 
so that the road itself 
shimmers under you 
the red shape 
of a white girl linger- 
ing, after my eyelids close.

by Sarah Reese

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