joanne burns



how many sandy creeks can
a language bear they were so hard
to identify through a wind pipe,
the cream for the devonshire tea defiant
as a brick you couldn’t see the two tree
hill behind the red jumbo; so what is the point
of disappointment this was a world of sheds: sales
and erections - and wet dreams aquariums; people
were falling above our four bedroom car - the valley
spread below in laconic grandeur: quibbles
vanished into the view the air wore your hunched
feet into waffles; return that insurance guide


wharf song

the floor stretches    amplifies    as the poets
read to the microphone proud for a moment
like the prototype of a linoleum polish
and or the beginning of a pindaric ode
- could a continent locate a small
ripple in its mind depressed deep
beneath a rock economy; fresh impatience
chucks a prickly bouquet from the mirrors
of its dance studio and poetry slinks
back into the darkness of pockets, as a
saw pokes its teeth through the partition
the generic wine flooding the loss of words
like a late transfusion



joanne burns is a writer of poetry, including prose poems; short fictions; and monologues. Over a dozen collections of her work have been published. Her most recent poetry collection an illustrated history of dairies (Giramondo, 2007) was shortlisted for the 2008 NSW Kenneth Slessor Poetry Prize. kept busy, a cd recording of joanne burns reading a selection of her work, was produced by River Road Press, also in 2007. She is the NSW editor for the poetry journal Blue Dog.