Octopus Ink at Dawn

I’m in the garden on a bench with green leaves

dripping diamonds of lemon sun.

Grandfather’s beard is growing on the fence and I’ve

Put out the umbrella I found at Bunnings.

It’s my red Japanese parasol that I pretend with.

A bee is buzzing somewhere, and I take photos of

Myself looking back at a phone to see someone new.

I think about making one of them my new profile pic

When the kitchen bench begins to swarm. I look

Back and I’m standing there, dress round my ankles

Not wearing any underwear. Thankfully, it’s all in my mind

But I’m by the sink; it’s true I shouldn’t try to think

So much when I should be sleeping, but I tell myself

The morning glow will soon wear off and while

I’m here smoking I can still feel the night snow.

A night of ploughing through the sleet at my computer

Makes me realise there’s jewels in my eyes, but

Then I cough and wonder how soon my last little

Breath might come, and how silly it would seem then for

Me to be sitting here singing about dream dragons.

On the news last night was a boy down the road

And a girl in a barrel, and I’ve put too much lemon

In my whiskey sour. It’s awful, but not like that.

I want to live but still be awake for tomorrow in this brand

New day. I might find another way to see the trees

Through the sun. But now it’s way past dawn and

The fire breathing clouds keep on hanging

Beyond the tree that keeps on waving,

And butterflies are still light and flying around

In the shining sun. It makes me like it here

Sitting and thinking on octopus ink,

Hoping I won’t take my last breath till

The very last run of the clock that is turning

Around and around like a kaleidoscope

Spinning down into a rabbit hole at the

Bottom of the garden. I’ve got to realise

Something surely. So I’ve got sage clouds burning,

And incense sticks are sending clouds to the

Sky to smudge the dark rain away.

‘I love you anyway,’ I say to the tentacles,

Eely snakes swirling across the blue horizon.

I pray to them, a poet caught in a too hot

Fire that floats in the gentle yellow wings

Of flying insects before anyone knew they

Were born: just a well worn truth, I guess,

A fact of nature and a limitless plate of

Blue where alligators pounced on a swimmer

Who never knew that the water hid a hungry

Limb that was ready for a person such as you.

And I knew that I was you too.

Like the coo of a pigeon in distant lemonade,

All that was missing was the image of your cry.

But I really must go now even though it’s

A veritable shame, as sad as the bees and the crow

That caws all alone, a flapping black omen of morning.


Ariel’s Revenge

no work today but dystopia flagellation

coming in close to home,

         oscilloscope arriving

         Kate Durbin stethoscope

toming on a throne for a seat

         for an ‘I’ for an iPrincess


         fat red lips

         smeared frog green;

trout blood wax layered about

         smacking pout:


sigh – still life bowl

where all the refuse goes

Seraphim stickers I watch

         flush away

                  close up, flying

into churn of phosphorescent

tubes of web worms’ hole

draining down heaven’s

         apocalyptic vision

sick day today

procrastinate everyway

         so funny:

raster ray babes diagnosing

disease with electron gun parody

         silly me

              girls, effigies

mutilated dolls, doppelganger

         cyber-fracking trolls

         wishing back into being

         little mermaid complete

another video to pastiche:

         Lara Glenum’s orange fish

swim on Paris Hilton hair

with scissors

with Ariel standing over her doctor’s

corpse:  sea foam, daughter of air

         reaching for dry land –

         she revived during the dissection

  to see two self-sliced

         legs   live streaming for her defection

Megan Anning

Megan Anning is an Australian writer who is fascinated by Bohemianism and the romantic idea of the ‘starving artist’. Her stories and poetry often incorporate intertextuality and have appeared in Text Journal, FIVE:2:ONE, October Hill Magazine, The Citron Review, The Closed Eye Open, The Dope Fiend Daily and The West End Magazine. She has an MA in Creative Writing and is completing her first novel as part of her PhD at Griffith University, Queensland.

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