Monday, December 29, 2008

Cat.

There's an old
one eyed
cat
next to me
purring
as he looks
at me
expectantly
waiting I guess
for a touch
a scratch
some food
or for me
to open
the door
and leave him
here
alone
as I go
about my
business
at the dead end
of a long
year.

But
you see,
Cat,
once I walk
out and close
that door
on you
there's no
eyes
on me
waiting
to see
what I will
do
no one
is purring
or staring
at me
with expectation
no one
is looking
at me
with Hope
that I can
change
their entire
world
with a single
touch
out there in the world
Cat.

So
let's leave the
front door
closed,
Cat,
and we'll go out
the back instead
and I'll have a
smoke
The King
while
you lay at my
feet
The Lover
and
we'll be
beholden
to no one
in This
a
world
of
our
very
own.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Yuul.

What do you believe?

What is that
nothing
inside you
where there should
be
something?

I mean
shouldn't there?

Are you a cynic
a cad
a scrooge
a cool hipster
too now
for World Wide Love
too anti this
for
this?

what?

you got
too much
disbelief
too much sight
that's it
you can see
everything
for
what
it
is
can't you?

So what is it?

This day...

what is it?

Is it a lonely
sentimental
dream
is it tomorrow
and what it brings
is it momma
is it pain
is it holding hands
with a girlfriend
is it cars rushing
in the stress
constant drinking
constant texts
a barrage of love
for one day only
I wanted to tell you
I love you
today
because today
it's ok
today is
The Love Day
isn't it?

What do you believe in?

I splash cold water
on my face before
I answer the question
to silence the
morning voices.

I believe
I say to myself
behind bleary eyes
under weasel red hair
in a child's voice

I say

I believe
that
one day
our
Hope
will become
Truth.

Maybe today for you
maybe tomorrow for me.

The kettle boils.

Merry Xmas.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Pot Black.

I started whistling
on the day you died
to drown out
the barking of the black
dog inside.

The problem was
I couldn't whistle
tunes, just one note
high and a bit spitty
with last night's hangover
as the rage and sadness
bubbled inside me.

But

it doesn't mean
anything, you know.

I just wanted to tell
you

that you made me
walk along the streets
like a sad, rusted
old kettle

because

I think we both
would have laughed
at that

over our afternoon
cuppa.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Tug.

Some days
I don't masturbate
in the morning
because I want
to carry that edge
all through the day,
he says to his friend.

I take a drink.

Edge, his friend says,
it gives you an edge?

Yeah,
like,
I'm faster,
he says,
like I've got purpose
you know
if I catch a beat
in the morning
then it's like I'm
already satisified
with the day
like I dont need
to do anything else
I'm like a lizard in the sun
baby,
but if I keep it pinched in
if it stays inside me
then I'm a fucking dynamo
I want the world
I want money
I want power
I want women.

He takes a drink
and slams down the empty glass
as if to show his friend
that his virility levels
are currently
at an "edgy" state
as he asks
what about you?

His friend
seems more philosophical.

I dont know, man
I just do it 'cause it
feels good. I don't really
think about it after that.

I smile and
notice my friend arrive
and walk over to the grass.

We wave to each other.

It's a fine day.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Air.

There are spirits you know,
he said to me,
in the trees
which make the leaves
dance
and I smiled
and stared upward
and replied,
I can see them!

We were walking
in a magic place
welcomed by
the gentle upward
slope of the earth
our feet in the mud
my scarf protecting me
as the devilish wind spirit
dashed excitedly around us.

From time to time
the sun would cut through
the canopy
and the path would be lighted
gold and in those minutes
the wind would silence
as if telling me to pay attention
to the importance of this
one moment.

I could hear rushing water
and I giggled as I asked,
is there a river spirit too?

He just smiled.

We walked and I breathed
and the cool air stayed inside me
forever
protecting my memories
in a soft mist of melancholy
hope.

And I turned to face him
but he was gone
faded now
my imaginary mentor
the Spirit
of my future self
yet I was not afraid
not here
in this oh so real
dream
of the past.

I kept walking
toward the water
fed from the mountains
and we
both
ran
free.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Looks like rain.

I don't know whether
I am nervous
about seeing my father
who I have not seen for
twenty years or more
(do I shake his hand?
he's crying - it's awkward)
or frightened
of standing again
amongst the graves
opening that same
old wound
or worse
the secret voice
that only I can hear
no feelings at all
I'm here with the dead
with people I don't know
and
I feel
nothing
at
all.

I wonder where I can smoke,
I'll think
as I stare up at the clouds
waiting for the inevitable
downpour.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sight.

The time that
happiness comes
for me
is always when
I don't care
if I find it
or not.

Did you know
that
I can be black
in my joy
or smile
in a fit of
depression
knowing it
is enough
just
to
feel
taste and
smell
my own
life?

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sweat.

Slim legged cobblestones
and cool blue
whispers and dirty
alleyways as I walk
unseen in cigarette fire
an incinerated doll - long
stretched and greaser
skin, ripped red, the crabs
in their eyes
tooth and claw
and red light carpets
well worn sweaty backs
a scrapping salivating
blistering boiling fire
a hold on tight
a haunted hotel
rapid conversation
stripped wood and
whiskey fog and blurred
visions, The Past
a haunted nest of dreams
crawling with spiders
a hypnotic rhythm
a disguise, a forgotten future
the cracked green
and filthy glass
knives on our fingers
old wooden stairs
painting and crying
the whole scene is blue
I'm caked in lust
when
all I see is you.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Give.

I walked to the shop
I'm pretty blue
no work at the moment
christmas looking grim
nothing new
I walked to the shop
and bought my medicine
answered the questions
of the nice lady pharmacist
and as I was leaving
the Greenpeace hands
were grabbing at me
and their mouths
were moving fast
and I'd just woken up
from a deep, deep
sleep
and the violent colours
of my dreams still
stood threatening
hulking in the dark corners
just behind my eyes
but at the front of my mind
and I wasn't prepared yet
to save the whales
the trees
the ice monkeys
or
just
no
I'm sorry
I can't
I really must go
I'm sorry
I mumbled
or actually mismumbled
in more of a
sorry-go-got-now
as I broke free
of their kelp
breaking the glass surface
and up, up
out into the sun
scraping the caked
yellow dust 
from my eyes
one - two - three
breathe
and walk
past this house
and that
and in this one a cat
not one, but two
actually three
thin, starving cats
sitting under a porch
of a derelict house
calling suspiciously
to me
a sound which I know
too well
please feed me
please feed me
please feed me
so I turn around
determined now
or maybe fuelled
by the guilt
whatever
I march with my head
held high
thrum pa pum pum
straight back toward the shop
thrum pa pum pum
and as the sliding doors open
the Greenpeace people stand
(are they saluting?)
to the sound of strings
the supermarket band
it's Christmas
a time to give
and they smile
at me
and I can smell them
thinking
we did it!
we're all going to change!
together we can do this!
hands across the world!
and I just stand in the door
beside the Vietnamese Bakery
and bask in the glow
of their smiles
for just a moment
let the music peak
BA BAPPA BA BUM
hold my breath
I want to enjoy this
so I walk
toward
them
and they prepare
pamphlets
and clip boards
and smiles
and I notice
how white
their teeth are
and how Green
their t-shirts
and how booming their
voices - they say
"He's back!"
as I walk straight past
them into the supermarket
and pick up a can of cat food
and I don't hide my eyes from them
as I stand in the queue
though I can see them confused now
unsure
of my intentions
and they try to approach others
in the meantime
but no one cares
not here
not in this tiny
tiny
shopping centre
who the fuck is going
to change the world
here
the pensioner and her walking frame
the butcher who cannot speak English
no
it is me
and only me
they want
the guy who looks like he likes music
fanaticism for fanaticism
and it's almost true
what they're thinking
I do like nature
I like it more than people
I cannot connect to people
the same way I can stand
in a forest
before a mountain
and listen and comprehend
just close my eyes and be at peace
I've never found that I could do that
with people
especially
those who are trying to help
the ice monkeys
by jumping out at me 
at shopping centres
anyway
I walk past them
and note the disappointment
in their eyes
I think -
jesus, kid, you're in the back of the line
and it's a fucking long line
but anyway I hold my can of cat food
out to them
and just tap it a little
tap tap tap
and they don't understand
and Hell, either do I
but I walk back to the house
with the dying cats
under the rotten wooden porch
and I open the can and lay it
on a clean piece of grass
for them
and I call to them
knowing full well
they're not going to come eat it
until well
after
I am gone
and I know too
that I can't afford to feed them
tomorrow
and the way they look
they might not even make it that far
so here
kitty cats
have a last little meal
eat it up good and forget
while you do
that tomorrow
you'll say
a goodbye to this
fucking world
of violent dreams
of consumer greed
of packaged charity
and medicine
and the sad plight
of distant
exotic animals
like
ice monkeys.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Right.

I wanted to be a writer
until I read all these books
and began to look down
on all the words
I'd written
ashamed
of my own ineptitude
and sticky
with low self esteem.

I thought
I had a story to tell
and I wrote
75,839 words
of it
before reading it back
and despising
every choice I made
and the dishonesty
in the painting
of it.

The fiction of it.
I hated that.

I wanted to be a writer
but lost my love of it
in my desire for it
like so many things
I had lost before
too hungry
to taste
too eager to swallow
choking
on my own
impatience
and
too depressed
to fight for it.

I wanted to be a story teller
but I didn't know
who I was
to tell you a story.

A sheep to trends
a dag with a tale
that dropped off
just
shit
with
no angle.

I wanted to sing you a song
but
I know
all these musicians
and my notes
seem predictable
and G to C
seems twee
and the anger
and sorrow
in my heart
seems

unoriginal.

I wanted to believe
in myself
but I always proved
myself wrong.

Now
I just want to feel
that being me
is
okay
to
me.

That when I tell myself
I want to be a writer
I want to sing a song
I can crash
through
the walls of cynicism
that I have built up
around myself
and let go
let
go

let
go.

I wanted to be a writer
so I thought I'd write
about
that.

Nest.

I hold
the calligrapher's pen
over the blank
sheet
of paper.

Nothing comes.

Which makes
me smile
the only smile
I have at the moment.

It is not bitter
or sad

I don't know
what it is

but it is no longer
a whole smile.

Nonetheless
I use it
as I gently
dip the pen
into the ink
and write:

What I'm trying to do
is unlearn
everything I know
in order
to become
a new beginning.

Then I take the paper
and hang it up to dry
and another day comes.

Maybe today
my whole smile
will return.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Wish.

I thought
when I was
young

I thought,

I'm going to be a star.

There I was
on the banks
of the Yarra River
a family barbeque
a few families anyway
tandem bikes
and plastic cups
filled with cola
and after lunch
I started shouting
at the other kids
to organise themselves
into a cast
so that I could direct
the afternoon's entertainment
some sort of panto,
impro
who knows.

I was a famous director
ten years old
flustered at the blonde
haired son of someone 
or other
who was more interested in 
the cricket bat
and wasn't paying attention
to the script.

God Damn!
I cried
forget about the bloody
bat
I need you to show
some emotion!

And

Why are you all so STUPID?

And my sigh 
was world weary
and 
held the frustrations
of a veteran Hollywood
Director
and god,
the empathy
and god
the path which 
lay before me...

That night
I lay in bed and 
let the dictionary
teach me a new word
which the blonde's
father had muttered at me
under his breath;

obnoxious.

I came to know the word well.

Time walked
slowly by.

I was going to be a star

on stage
with a hand 
bleeding from a wound
of love
suffered the night before the show
plasmatic branches
clawing down my arms
and over the guitar
and sweat and roll
and jump
yell here
forget about tone
who needs fucking tone
when 
you 
have GUT
the music had gut

but we didn't

we had the same 
as you
or him
or her
just a life

just an ordinary life
with bills
and broken hearts
and moving house
and I never spoke to him/her/them
again
I wonder how they are.

I was going to be a star.

I didn't think that
but I did
it's hard to explain
it wasn't so much a star
so much
as I just felt
so FULL
of (shit, you say, haha
haha)
so full of something
that fucking needed to be released 
and it wasn't work
and it wasn't fucking
and it wasn't running
it was something that needed
to be made
and it ate me up
ate me all up
and licked the bowl until
everything passed me by
and everyone else rode the wave
and left me straddled and cold
as the sun sank
and the sharks came out to feed
their hunger
my blind ambition
the words right there
hope which hindered my sight
a star
a star
I was 
a fucking star
guess what Jack
you'll never fucking
believe it
it's me
Mathew
and ha
fucking ha
I became a fucking star

except

it's not what I thought

you know

I didn't mean it like that

it's cold Jack
bloody cold

and I'm

billions
of light years
from anywhere

alone 
and blinking

in the dark
vicious

night.

Shit

I'm
a
star.

One little voice
burned into
humility

a wee
struggle
invisible
amongst
a billion
billion billion
other stars.

A tiny
tear
fallen
into a river.

A single
grain
of
dream
upon a 
desert
built of wishes.

A nobody

just like you.

I am a star.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Glass House.

Columns 
used
to
support
great
works
of
beauty
architecture
and
wonder.

Now
they
are 
places
where
a
person
tells
us
all
about 
what
they
are 
wearing
and 
how
that
relates
to
every
day
life
in
a
"humourous"
way.


I
wonder
how
we
are
going
to
fuck
up
Arches.

Song.

Heaven's gone
lost all of its meaning.

The devil's been dancing
but I have been leading.

The demons grow bold
with the smile they've been sold
Hell might be burning
but Heaven's grown cold.

And Oh Lord
won't you tell me
if you can

just what is the plan
for a half broken man
like me.

And Oh Lord
won't you share it
with me

just how I can stand
this black hearted man
called me.

********

My heart's a wound
that never stops bleeding.

The ghosts have been callin'
but I don't believe them.

A pain that won't die
two tears in my eye
if Hell's really burnin'
then I'm going to fry.

And Oh Lord
won't you tell me
if you can

just what is your plan
for a half broken man
like me.

And Oh Lord
won't you share it
with me

just how you can stand
a black hearted man
like me.

********

Lately I've been thinkin' 
about leaving.

Taking some pills
and leaving you weepin'.

I'll follow the trend
go chasing The End

Goodbye o' Lord now
The Devil's my friend.

Yeah.

And Oh Lord
won't you tell me
if you can

just what was your plan
for a half broken man
like me.

And Oh Lord
I wished you'd shared it
with me

just how you could stand
a black hearted man
like me.

I wish I'd known
the plan
for this half broken man
called

me.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Driftwood.

I dreamed
that I was driftwood
thinking,
I can live like this
every night
a different tide
takes me to a different shore
and
I'll roll in the waves
and
I'll lie face up
on a silent sea
lit blue 
by the laughing face
of the moon.

I can live like this,
the me that was the driftwood
thought.

I'll never sink, see?

The sea 
saw.

No weight is the way
and sometimes, I say
to the muted tides,
I'll spin
a glass angel
on the marbled surface
of the ocean
this is the method
that I will use
to discover what
lies
over my own horizons
I'll be free
I'll relax every muscle
and you - the tides, still, listening -
will take me there
you will be my engine room
my navigator.

Yeah,
I was thinking that
you know -
high as the tide
with no worries inside
a pack on my back 
maybe one big thick coat
maybe a tree
out somewhere pretty
you know,
for when it rains
a retro
vision
of what it would be like
to walk

just walk.

I could live like this,
I thought 
that day.

Homeless
but dry
and happy 
inside
with a
humble
little
dream
to be
forever free...

Yep.

[I roll a smoke here 
and 
maybe 
take my shoes off.]

I thought that
that day.

but 
it 
just 
wasn't 



me.








Colours.

It's not an original thought
that knock knock knocking
on the door 
inside my head.

Not for me,
anyway.

It's an old thought
hot air and gas
and rings of cold rock
which have turned 
ice
in the waiting.

It's not a new thought
I find
on my step
not a new feat
nor cathartic breath
or a single 
chime
on a silent night...

a silver note
which echoes

a white blossom
dying 
upon the branch.

But I hope 
this thought
which carried upon
a whisper
might one day
reach land.

Knock knock knock
I hear it
as cowering 
behind the door
I panic and close my lips
tie my hands behind my back
and bruise my eyes closed
in spots of coloured dream

tomorrow 
tomorrow
tomorrow

Boom boom boom
the urgent fist
upon the wood
splintering what little chance
I have of invisibility
as the cracks
begin to show
behind the curtains
of my own
personal
comedy.

And 
the 
key 
turns

and 
the 
light
burns

and in it comes
uninvited
but not
unexpected.

It is not an original thought..

well,
not
to me anyway;

that I have lost all wisdom 
amongst the see 
through folly
a stuffed stocking
of sheer nonsense
and regret
that any lesson
I may have learned
or taught
or suffered for
or laughed at
or spat in the face of
or drank in spite of
or listened with passion to
or sang in the rain of
or smiled in the pain of
has
long
since left
me
a blank canvas
leaned
against
a wall
forgotten 
by the inner artist
who may or may not
rediscover me
covered in dust
and in old age
begin again
to paint me
a master's
piece.