Saturday, November 30, 2013

Ian C. Smith- Three Poems

County Killarney

A foul wretch, I slink like a ravaged hound
from the mildewed caravan we rented
(for campers, a step up from in-tented)
to distance her from my rank smell, the sound.
She hurries through the shadows to find a phone
speaks to a doctor, urges him to come.
They clean and comfort, he injects my bum
asks no fee, leaves us drained lovebirds alone.

From Slieve Mish, my weakness in abatement
we look down on our deserted campground
that Edenic scene of my debasement
camera clicking three-sixty around.
South, the Channel Islands and sexy France
east, the harbor at Cork, north, Galway Bay
westward the Atlantic, the U.S.A.
but my view is the grim view of lost chance.
I fear, back with the crack in the city
she’ll have nothing left for me but pity.  

Patrick paints a picture

Red lilac & gold, our son
reflects his mother’s lovely face &
so important is this

study of devotion he
caresses each detail in
complete concentration &

I criticise his grey attitude
towards all responsibilities
except his island of art

I, who can’t even attract
his mother & don’t understand
a computer’s psyche

don’t know what love is
love, abstract facts of hope & grief
blurred, with no clear outline


The patrolman, this middle-aged migrant,
wonders what has become of his dreams.
In the hot days he wakes, worry like a bruise.
Now his torchlight shakes, earlier arrivals,
midnight rats, whisper across shined shoes.

This stretched summer, his memory of sad songs,
he considers his wife’s epic regret,
his son’s sneers, her recital of wrongs
while his new car’s curved flanks dazzle
like any parked status symbol’s should.

The son sings of kookaburras in gum trees,
collects footy heroes, baulks
bewilderment in a hybrid accent
mocking seniority, talks
of failure to grasp the rules of new games.

Then, out of shadows one fatigued night,
a neat circle head-centre in frosted glass.
Police find no shell near the warehouse
but our patrolman quits while he can,
gives his son a gun story, leaves out the fright. 

Bio:  Ian C Smith’s work has appeared in Axon:Creative Explorations,The Best Australian Poetry, London Grip, Poetry Salzburg Review, Quarterly Literary Review Singapore, The Weekend Australian,& Westerly  His latest book is Here Where I Work,Ginninderra Press (Adelaide).  He lives in the Gippsland Lakes area of Victoria, Australia.

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