Poetry Blog by Chris Hubbard
Lie to Me
When the halyard raps the empty staff
and the hurricane screams its rage,
and the water-mountains heave and crash
in their spume-flecked valleys chained,
and I look upon this wild expanse
shouting fury for my pleas,
and ask in dread “Do we stand a chance?”
Please, oh please take pity ….
…. lie to me.
When darkness infiltrates my being,
seeps silent t...
Saturday 10th November 2018 1:39 am
This piece is a reflection on the circles of life.
An old man walks on the river's bank.
(I hear his dry bones clink and clank)
but his shadow's swift, his hauteur vain.
Like fast jets low over Salisbury Plain.
Dead leaves packed in many gutters,
overlook the creaking, bolted shutters.
Winter's a-coming round again.
The birds abandon concrete, ...
Sunday 4th November 2018 4:34 am
Occasionally, Far North Queensland experiences the full force of a Category Five cyclone (also known as a hurricane or typhoon). Their strength is phenomenal, as can be the damage caused, and I certainly would not like to be out on the battered Barrier Reef in one.
The Reefs of Armageddon
Warm and deadly waters shine like beaten silver
wrapped 'round kaleidoscope cays in the morning ...
Wednesday 19th September 2018 6:52 am
A Shattered Rose
The slick cliff'd river smears shiny
blue-green sliding waters
across richly wooded chateau-lands;
hurrying through honey-scarred falaises,
cat-mouthed where toffee sandstones
arced onto sleeping innocents beneath.
A country blessèd and blighted both,
in equal measure (as aeons bequeath)
full with easy money, and its deadly past.
Tuesday 18th September 2018 1:28 pm
A Prayer for the Living
Pray that your living be thus:
A journey fulfilled, not forgotten,
a place for the touching of souls, not Mammon,
to freely forgive, and bear no malice,
a mind at peace, never roiling in anger -
and room to grow, not retreat or wander,
with no pangs of envy for the birds as they fly,
but to drink in the indigo boom of the waves
as they c...
Monday 17th September 2018 10:44 am
After a long hiatus I offer a piece that came from my recent Greek Odyssey.
The Smiling Man
Ululant sobs of brush-cutters
piercing its Elysian peace,
rivers of tourists cascade
down through old Olympia,
as still as the flowering trees
that colour its ancient sandstones.
Fallen mere centuries past, archaic capitals,
prone like road-blocks, guide the eye
Thursday 13th September 2018 1:42 pm
A memory of a small but unforgettable part of London.
Walking down to Camden Lock
with colour and fizz all around
on a warm August day:
narrow boats, top hats and silk scarves,
old pubs, rent boys, spruikers;
The Regent's dark canal,
people-watchers. Music like jewels.
Such is the raucous silence
Thursday 15th March 2018 4:02 am
Art as the Gaining and Practise of Wisdom
What are you doing this morning? – and will you play again
your lustrous fiddle for the coins strangers drop into your hat?
Or have you moved on from hustling Trafalgar Square
where the floating Yodas connect like Einstein's cat?
Either way, your art creates its beauty by merely becoming
the eloquent centre of its universe, its mimet...
Saturday 10th March 2018 8:03 am
I fancy the setting here is the House and Gardens of a very large Stately Home of England.
The Harp and the Fountain
Plucked by tumbled fountain waters, arpeggio
harps cascade clear and bright, flow
smooth as polished marble by Michelangelo.
Above, drawn by light, Heaven's trim barouches glow
dream-like through veils of rainbow'd mist,
arrow South a skein of Tundra S...
Wednesday 7th March 2018 1:01 pm
I recently assembled these thoughts on coming across the poem's quotation from John Steinbeck while reading The Grapes of Wrath. I often suggested to my students the advantage to be gained by attempting an argument in opposition to what the student wished to argue. In other words, the good old Light and Dark strategy. The "Terrace" setting is Perth's main city thoroughfare, St. George's Terrace. I...
Thursday 1st March 2018 7:30 am
After a pause due to computer woes, I return to the airwaves with this offering. Its predominant theme appears to be the fear of change which, for me at least, is pervasive.
On The Border
The sky's dissolved in enveloping greys,
close as blankets, cold like hotel sheets;
looking over your shoulder as dawn raises day -
you test the gloaming's disdain for lamp-lit streets.
Thursday 22nd February 2018 3:01 am
This poem is for all those who find this life a trial. Keep on keeping on, as someone once remarked.
Buried in the Sunlight
Eleanor played the pipes as a piper should,
flying light with grace and flair and swing,
with airs like a wind band in the deep greenwood:
dancing her careless heart towards an Appalachian spring.
All who knew her, all for whom her life seemed bles...
Monday 5th February 2018 12:52 pm
A Song for the Fragile
I met a man who drank the stars before a dancing Irish hearth,
declaring that a hundred billion people,
more or less, must have lived and died upon this earth;
and no matter how high a church's steeple
or the fervour of its faithful far below,
their lives are eventually, universally and unfortunately lethal.
Warming to the craic he mused: ...
Sunday 4th February 2018 5:31 am
The Nullarbor Plain, seven hundred miles of waterless plain but with many trees (and untold kangaroos) is other-worldy in its exquisite and remote presence. Like most parts of non-urban Australia it is a dangerous and even fatal place for fools and risk-takers, who regularly pay the ultimate price. This piece is about the aura of darkness that surrounds the happy traveller in such surroundings....
Monday 22nd January 2018 4:33 am
This poem recalls a certain zeitgeist I detected during benign winter days spent in my adopted home town of Perth many years ago; lassitude, provincialism, an inclination towards fatalism, perhaps merely bourgeoise self-satisfaction. It did not survive the new century, needless to say.
Come here & listen:
- Winter -
slithering on grit-sand moved
by swathing waves...
Saturday 20th January 2018 8:15 am
The Voyager's Song
I see the shoreline,
black and unremarked
sleeping in secret, supine,
an open door, strong
as a broad Yorkshire
weak as rags of sea mist.
Soon I shall fetch upon its sands,
where cold silence reigns
uninvited like the early dawn.
Beside me shall burn,
in isolation and awe,
the last bright flower
of an ancient memory...
Friday 19th January 2018 2:43 am
It seems that the old-time "magic show" is experiencing something of a renaissance, especially in the visual mass media. Even so, I doubt its fundamental attraction will alter one iota. The gap between acclaim and scorn is still wafer-thin.
Pay attention, dear reader, and I'll weave a magic vein,
where rabbits live in top hats and assistants float in air,
Thursday 18th January 2018 11:37 am
This rumination came from growing awareness of my mortality which, in turn, is generated and measured by the expanding list of things once given or assumed that, alas, are no longer possible.
How shall I talk to you, my friend?
How should I regard you
(and will I care)
as you grow ever older before my gaze
while I stay young?
Who are you? Dare I look on yo...
Monday 15th January 2018 2:33 pm
I wrote this piece while I was caring for my identical twin brother, following major surgery. Nearly everything you may have heard about identical twins is true.
The pain of being is not mine, but
my brother's. He cries and howls the Midnight
down into uneasy drowse
as the daylight lifts his covers
over swelling clouds of hurt.
Breaking, I balm him a little,
Sunday 14th January 2018 4:11 am
In the disturbed world of today, I believe we must look to the tragedies of the past for guidance into the future. This piece is based on one of my first efforts, now many years ago.
The City of God
“It stands on a hill,” you say,
"a golden fortress, buttress to our faith,
a Heavenly Jerusalem to Rome's decay”.
Such piety is useful
to commanders of the expendable,
Friday 12th January 2018 7:15 am
Many years ago I was intrigued by the appearance on Perth roads of bumper stickers displaying the enigmatic statement that "The Goddess is Dancing". I had no idea what this advertising campaign was all about, so I put together my own preferred explanation.
The Goddess is Dancing
Far from the powdered sand-tracks
in dunes dry beyond ages,
past unwatered acacias
where the wh...
Wednesday 10th January 2018 2:19 am
This piece comes from an exhibition of the work of celebrated Australian artist and sculptor Brett Whiteley. Parts of his enormous masterwork "Alchemy" can be found on the cover artwork of Dire Straits' album of the same name. A long-term drug user, he died in 1992 from a heroin overdose.
A metaphor for clear technique,
the Gallery (patrolled, secure,
Tuesday 9th January 2018 7:28 am
The Meaningless Surface of Life
We are soldiers of fortune in armies
of memes, floating on rivers of
high-flown illusion: the past is confusion
that the future redeems. Days are not hours
but frameworks of seeing,
not kernels of truth but mere mirrors of being.
My room glows and fades
as each day retreats into merciful nightfall,
and deception defeats such...
Sunday 7th January 2018 5:00 am
I reserved this many years ago for when there was nothing left.
bone - beige;
rising to meniscus:
will pull you,
round the mouth,
round the grin.
along the waterstick,
Saturday 6th January 2018 8:22 am
One day two years ago, I visited the D-Day landing beaches in Normandy, a sombre and unsettling experience. This piece came directly from that day.
Quiet rooms in stone villas,
fearful wanderings in fine spaces, staring
over wild June's glinting barbed-wire strands;
streaming faces tumble over cascading waterfronts,
where we trembled.
Nightmares overtake us li...
Wednesday 3rd January 2018 11:15 pm
This piece dates from a time when, to put it mildly, I was adrift on a stormy ocean.
I woke from a dream of Huntsmen
cracking with the sound of crashing trees
as they sledge-hammered
the walls of my room.
They said it was to certify
but when they left
the walls still stood,
dividing my loss
Wednesday 3rd January 2018 12:41 pm
The large Greek island of Naxos in the Cyclades group is an excellent example of the best of its kind, and in any era: wealthy, influential, single-minded, ancient and beautiful. The narrow passage-like streets of Chora, its major settlement, inspire in some an other-worldly sense of the preternatural, the extraordinary. Hence this speculation.
Out of silence a figure ap...
Monday 1st January 2018 1:10 pm
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