January 17

Today’s poetry challenge was personification. This sketch is my first attempt at rhyming for a very long time, and is a tribute of sorts to my old Ikea kitchen table.

Your little Bjursta

I’m completely wrong here, I know
Too dark, too small and too scratched
You really can’t blame me though
That the chairs you chose don’t match

Remember how happy you were
When you fitted me in your hatchback
Yes – there were others you preferred
You two-faced queen of the flat pack

But back then, I was dark and clean
And you used me to dine and play
The curries you spilt were obscene
But I didn’t mind the chardonnay

And then your children came along
with food I became encrusted
They beat and played me like a song
Hectic yes, but we adjusted

Quick fixes and the fancy meal
Laughter, tears and noisy chatter
Hosting the meaningful and real
You were all that really mattered

There she stands, I’m to be replaced
And you banish me down the stairs
Sulking in a corner, disgraced
But it’s her turn for mismatched chairs

January 13

I am not particularly inspired today. This sketch requires work, but I am posting it anyway, as the exercise of writing daily is about discipline rather than brilliance.

Old Age

Tears like rain
Slide down her cheeks
She does not
How her life has come to be
Defined by clocks and locked doors

January 12

Inspired by an afternoon at the pool with my children. A shadorma (Spanish form that is a little like a haiku).

Sparkly blue
mirroring the sun
At the pool
Rainbow clad
Children shimmer like minnows
Voices shrill with joy

Above them,
the plaintive cries of
open mouthed
wagtail chicks
Are barely noticed in the
wild cacophony

January 8

This is another ‘Found Poem’. I have drawn phrases from a number of quotes by Tony Abbott and rearranged them into a poem of sorts. A little naughty, but I had fun putting it together.

Housewives of Australia
have a bit of sex appeal
very connected
young, feisty
I probably feel a bit threatened

We always have
Enormous numbers of women
They are different
simply doing housework
Focused on the household budget
As they do the ironing
It’s folly to think they will ever dominate
I don’t think its a bad thing at all
The most convenient exit
From awkward situations
The easy way out
To be on Team Australia’s shirtfront
A place for everything
Not everyone’s place
I don’t have any magic answers

January 5

In my attempts to find poetic inspiration, I googled poetic forms and discovered the Found poem.  It takes and refashions existing texts. For this effort, I chose Paul Keating’s famous Redfern speech delivered on the 10th of December 1992. I cannot take credit for the phrasing, as it is a cut and past of Keating’s words. Not sure if I like it or not, but it was an interesting process.

Bad History

We brought the alcohol
Took the children
Committed the murders history ignored
We simply cannot sweep injustice aside
Imagine these things being done to us
We cannot imagine

We are beginning to recognise
We are beginning to learn
We are beginning to see
That the problem starts with
Our failure to imagine
These things being done to us

It can’t be too hard
If we open one door others will follow
There is everything to gain
We can have justice out of the shadows
The basis of a new relationship
Begins with the most basic human response
Recognition they are part of us

We need to open our hearts a bit

January 4

When I was researching for a historical writing project in 2014, I learned that the migrant ship called the Sibayak was used to take Australians to war in the 1940s. This poem is inspired by one of their practice drills. It is also my first try at a sevenling.

Spots of red dancing in the breeze
Below, the swollen, shuddering sea
Bears hopeful young men to war

Standing in rows with swaying knees
Uncertain in virgin khaki green
They point at the sky and fire

Like blood, balloons splatter and fall