(Hour 24) 21.30pm-22.30pm. PROMPT: gift  

the gift

: i’m giving : is to myself : to stop beating : myself up : over an idea : a good idea : any idea : when exhaustion : is winning : my eyes : are squealing : the gift : i’m giving : is the gift : of giving : up : accepting : a bad : short : pome : rapidly executed : right now : is infinitely better : than a perfect poem : meticulously constructed : & submitted : an hour from now : & so : flights of angels : etc :

(Hour 23) 20.30pm-21.30pm. PROMPT: imaginary pet

Milky

you noticed there’s no animals either
or very few  i think they were also
taken out by the Pulse
Stella looks out the window
as if seeing for the first time

more than anything i wanted
a big dog white as snow
something ludicrously cute
don’t ask me why
we moved round a lot

so pets weren’t possible
but i had a book of dog breeds|
wanted something big white fluffy
like an American Eskimo dog
Samoyed  Great Pyrenees
something like that
something a bit exotic
for a boy who’s life
was whitebread bland

the best thing about
Milky’s imaginariness
was no dog poo to pick up
no need to brush her
no hair everywhere
no need to take her for walks
just unlimited love & cuddles
whenever my 10 year old self needed it 

it was almost perfect
if it weren’t so sad

(Hour 22) 19.30pm-20.30pm. PROMPT: visual image

town of ghosts & oils of snakes

now we have Rueben,
Stella wants to leave yesterday
get to her grandparents
& bunker down till tomorrow never

while i too am keen to disappear
i need to find petrol possibly
a spark plug, battery, new tires
& much more for the cruiser

the capital is the best place
to find what we need fast
despite the drones criss-crossing
the skies between the scrapers

an old man all in black
drags his shadow toward us
starts filling our heads with hope
rumours of things too flawless for truth

pockets of resistance
possibilities of protection
bee propolis & alpaca antibodies
& a safe haven in Tassie

crystal radio set network
across the country
there are more survivors
than we’d imagined

all of which sounds too crazy for words
suddenly i am the one  spruiking flight

(Hour 21) 18.30pm-19.30pm. PROMPT: long for

respiration

i only have one brother ;
i know with some certainly
i no longer have a mother
either loving or damaged;
it’s probable my father too
long estranged from us
is also particulates of dust
blowing in the streets
of whatever city he fled to
when he gave up his parental
benedictions & obligations
shortly after Rueben arrived ;
& i have one new acquaintance
who for all his overwhelming irritations
may yet become a lifelong friend ;
yet all i require at this moment
is the chance to catch breath ,
a semi-second’s rest , a mid-act
intermission to recover ;
before plunging forward
to rescue the most precious
stray boy on the planet

(Hour 20) 17.30pm-18.30pm. PROMPT: light

nothing rhymes with O

i’m so over orange —
the glow of endless sunset
cat’s eyes — burning retinas
scorching — red hot coals
that can’t be doused
     worse still, nothing rhymes with it

except for one Welsh mountain
& a technical word for
single-or many-celled structures
in which spores are produced
especially : fungi, algae, mosses, & ferns.
     neither of which find their way easily into a poem

(Hour 19) 16.30pm-17.30pm. PROMPT: Siphonophore Apolemia

secrets uncovered

so it seems
the AI units
are only partially so
what absolutely felt
so completely tech
actually has a squid thing
hiding inside a deep sea spiral
in the middle of poly-silicate suit

a boogaloo of blue
Chinese-dragon themed
electric filaments
which might be teeth
or a beard for filtering
or polyamorous polyps

either way
i don’t care
dead stinger
is a good stinger

(Hour 18) 15.30pm-16.30pm. PROMPT: holiday narrative poem

 

Rueben reunion

Camp was camp.
As you’d expect.
You know I didn’t want to go
but mum insisted.
Character building, she said.
Make new friends, she said.
Be lots of fun, she said.
1 out 3 isn’t bad I guess.
Surviving an apocalypse
does build character.
Even if there’s gotta be
Eeasier ways

But, new friends, no.
Fun times times, no
Spent the first three days
sitting on the bottom
of the deep end of the pool
practising for the world
Freediving Championships

When the Pulse came.
there were, as you’d expect
at Aquatic Camp, plenty of kids
underwater as well as coaches
so our survival rate was high
But kids soon started getting sick
Those that were standing up
at the time
or on top of the water. Those deep,
Like me. Made it.

After a few days with no news
No parents coming to collect.
The coaches decided we should
All go somewhere safer.
Though they never told me where
Or what that safe place was.
They begged me to come with them.
I refused.
They ordered me to come with them
I. Refused.
They dragged me off with them.
I had no choice.
But I soon escaped & came back here
Cos I knew this is where we’d meet

I was never worried, never doubted
I knew you were going to find me 

 

 

(Hour 17) 14.30pm-15.30pm. PROMPT: obsolete technology

losing our licenses

after watching the AI pod
efficiently blast the 4WDs
into every one of their
respective particles
& constituent molecules
i realised our ute
was obsolete;

petroleum-based technology
had been redinosaured
(& yes i know the bulk
of petrochemicals come
from plant matter not dead
angry pre-birds, but a little
poetic license please)

Stella sounded as low as she’s been
so what are we going to do?
easy, i replied smiling
go old school. pedal power.
what about the little ones?
don’t worry, my plan
is both cunning & stunning.

i drew her a quick sketch
for the first time i feel
i’m seeing Stella really smile

(Hour 16) 12.30pm-13.30pm. PROMPT: love poem without the word

opposites

1.
She never listens to me
His ideas are always dumb
She talks so fast
He never finishes a sentence
She won’t face the truth about Rueben
If only he spoke as fast as he drives
She never wants to take a risk
He thinks this is all some sort of game

2.
She smells delicious despite it all
His chest is pleasingly curved
She is passionate about everything
He thinks deeply about everything
She won’t face the truth about Rueben
If only he knew how his smile thrills
She is so determinedly strong willed
He is braver than anyone I’ve ever met

I’m so glad I found him
I’m so lucky she found me

(Hour 15) 12.30pm-13.30pm. PROMPT: Air travel

shot down

Been wondering for a while
whether i / we / i could
capture a pod.
But when i tell Stella,
she is singularly unimpressed.

Think how fast we could travel,
i persist.

Why do all boys
   have to play hero?
How do you know
   you could even fly one
   that’s assuming;
   (a very big if) you should
   somehow overcome
   the intergalactic AI unit?

Do they have flight plans?
Can you speak Duster?
Can two people even fit
   into one?

Let’s just stick
   to our plan
   & keep going.

Your plan
I mutter.

Stella pretends
she doesn’t
hear me.

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