Monday, June 1, 2015

Tuesday Poem - 'Skyshow' by Toby Davidson


Fireworks now and fire worked then, as long as it sparkles
we'll claim Bethlehem. Bottled sparkle, served on buildings
rains forty stories down on mounted police as they baton-charge
youths, including at least three Darrens I saw tearing each other
to garn fuggun gah-un as their girlfriends screamed Darren, Darren
and more joined in cos it's a free country of battlers you can't stop
the music feeling no pain punching headfuls of shirt with a smoke
in one hand pissing green and gold darkness from an old semi-naked
twist top shrapnel wound … I'll never forget the bloke who told his
opponent Ah pull your pants up, mate before socking him straight
in the chops. To summarise: we are a noble people, unable to bear
ourselves without booze, if we can't blow things up we just fight
for the hell of it, our national day is a crucible of destruction,
and I want to go home, I just want to go home, but this is where I live.


Skyshow: In Perth there is an annual Australia Day fireworks display set to music by a commercial radio station.

Toby Davidson and I will be doing a gig together in Canberra on June 9th at the Gods, so I pulled out his book Beast Language which I had purchased after hearing him read for the first time at Hares & Hyenas here in Melbourne. I hadn't quite finished it – the one hour train ride home from Flinders Street to Carrum is not quite long enough to read a whole book. So there's quite a few sitting there in the almost-read pile. And Beast Language repaid the effort to finish it off and knock it on the head and choose just one poem for the blog and then shelve it somewhere between Adrian Coleman and Bruce Dawe. It's a bit of a goer, his first book. As Judith Beveridge opines in the blurb – 'Toby Davidson never lets the dust settle.'

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