Warning for developing minds: this site contains a few poems that use 'swear' words or relate to sex or other 'adult themes'.

I’m the featured poet at Perth Poetry Club on 26 July

I have a double feature, which means two ten-minute sets, one in each half of the program.

Saturday 26 July, 2-4pm, Perth Poetry Club, at The Moon cafe, 323 William Street, Northbridge. Entry is free but you will be encouraged to contribute according to your means. Plus open mike — come early to sign up.

I’m also reading at OOTA’s ‘Poetry Bites’ members lunch at Fremantle Arts Centre on 1 August.

the moon on her setting arc

as I go past the half-built homes
back to my kitchen
at the end of my day
the moon’s on her setting arc
finding a path down the sky

her face is jaundiced
by smog and the dust
of all these construction sites
building and building trying
to stave off some dragon
or other
some tide of people or water
they’re generating
so much that my nose blocks trying
to keep it out and my eyes flood trying
to wash it away and when I look at the moon

she’s only halfway down
her setting arc but already
she’s orange and dull

for a moment I think
her face is a lovely
fireside colour
but then I remember

she’s the moon!
the silvery moon!
the pale goddess moon!

and right now
she’s not
a goddess

she’s a woman

looking down at her feet
as she goes out of sight
at the end of her day

her face all oranged
with the dust of men

Winner of the 2014 Ethel Webb Bundell Literary Awards presented by the Society of Women Writers WA

Related poem way more special

Hear Jackson in Melbourne, Sydney and Perth soon

Melbourne: Thursday 26 June, 7pm, at House of Bricks, 40 Budd Street, Collingwood

Sydney: Tuesday 1 July, 7:30pm, at Word in Hand, Friend in Hand Hotel, 58 Cowper Street, Glebe

Perth: Saturday 26 July, 2-4pm, Perth Poetry Club, at The Moon cafe, 323 William Street, Northbridge.

I’m also reading at OOTA’s ‘Poetry Bites’ members lunch at Fremantle Arts Centre on 1 August.

quite a thing

To stay warm, I burn
living and fossil wood,
dry leaves and sticks of dung
I smoke my lungs to black lace

For eons cool Earth
has tried to chill me out
as I sit at the firepit
in my charcoal clothes

If I asked, she’d let me
be the wheel in her water,
the panel in her sunshine,
the turbine in her wind

But a woman who doesn’t smoke
is missing something, and I
have quite a thing
for fire

(From lemon oil)

At Diamond Creek

Only this, the blue whisper of the leaves
and strips of pale bark
hanging high by the creekbed,
quiet, decorative, inconsequential, only

this, the black flower that blossoms
in the chest of a woman
until she can no longer breathe,
until her voice becomes

silently strangely sneakily
slowly this, the blue whisper of the leaves
and strips of pale bark
hanging high by the creekbed,

quiet, decorative, inconsequential,
awaiting the next storm of flames.

(From lemon oil)

spacesuit

The moon is a piece of rock in the sky.

One watches through the locked glass,
not waving,
as the other gets into a car and drives,
not tooting,
under the black sky,
under the moon that is blanked out by clouds,
that is a piece of rock in the sky,
that didn’t feel Armstrong and the other test pilots
brushing its surface,
taking some samples,
then leaving,
maybe forever.

The moon is not a place to stay:
it’s a place to visit,
and you’d better have your spacesuit on
or the lack of pressure and air
will kill you.

But go.
I recommend it.

It’s breathtaking there
under the black sky
on the untrodden moon.

Jackson poeming on radio next Thu 5 June, and in other places

I’m back in Western Australia and will be reading and talking poetry on Joondalup local radio Twin Cities FM next Thursday 5 June 2014 from 12:30pm to 1pm. Tune in to 89.7fm or listen online at 897fm.com.au. Thanks to Peter Cowan Writers Centre for getting their members on radio.

Advance news: I’m a featured poet at Perth Poetry Club on 26 July. Perth Poetry Club happens weekly on Saturdays, 2-4pm at The Moon cafe, 323 William Street, Northbridge.

I’m also poeming at OOTA’s ‘Poetry Bites’ members lunch at Fremantle Arts Centre on 1 August.

Jackson poeming in Yorkshire 29 April

It isn’t a poetry tour! Nevertheless, thanks to Anthony Costello, I have a gig at Kava Cafe, Todmorden, Yorkshire, on the evening of Tuesday 29 April 2014.

Watch this space in case any more reading/performance opportunities come my way.

I’ll be in England, Scotland and nearby parts from 24 April to 23 May and may pop up at an open mike near you. On the other hand, I may be too busy looking at things, seeing friends and relatives, and writing.

This is not my gig

A 24-page zine containing 22 peculiar poems. (First published 2014 by the author; ISBN 978-0-9870809-3-6.)

Number of zines

Prices include postage. Zines are available more cheaply from me in person.

Please contact me for more info or to arrange another way to pay.

The right metaphor

‘The right metaphor’ cd cover ‘The right metaphor’ back cover

This is my first poetry album, recorded in 2013 on the analogue desk at Fat Shan Studios, Perth, Western Australia. We recorded 14 poems. I accompany three of them with my original music on guitar, piano, bass and keyboard.


$25 (Australian) including postage.

CDs are available more cheaply from me in person. Please contact me for more information or to arrange another way to pay.

Listen or download free at SoundCloud

In the dream, he tells me he doesn’t need a condom

In the dream, he tells me
he doesn’t need a condom
because

he has his book. In the dream, we’ve both
read it. Condoms are a manifestation
of Capitalism. A Bad Thing. Probably

made by Monsanto. We don’t
need them. We can use our minds
to divert the sperm. In the dream

I know it works, if done
correctly, wholeheartedly,
together. We have to trust.

I can’t.
I can’t.
I can’t. Yet

in the dream, we don’t
have a condom
to our name.

untitled (the hibiscus blossom)

the hibiscus blossom closed
wrapped around itself
pointing north

lemon oil

In this dream
I heal the cuts
his bareness
has left
all over me

with tart, sparse,
sweet, spreading
lemon oil,
the same soft stings

with which I nurture
your smooth
unlacquered
fret-slit
rosewood
fingerboard

(From lemon oil. First published in Society of Women Writers WA Newsletter.)

Last week’s rose

Last week’s rose, aslant in a carafe,
is puffed and piled like a 60s hairdo,
curling at the edges into frills of delicate crescents
like sad little lipstick smiles.

Last week’s rose is dancing on the laminex,
scattering scarlet tatters,
oozing louche scent.

Last week’s rose is on
the pull.

I extend a finger, mothkiss
a petal. Its secret
is as soft as a skin’s wish.

I play the red membrane
between thumbprint and fingerprint, light,
careful. But last week’s rose

is tough! The flake clings
to the terminal bloom
with its yoke of sawtoothed leaves
and its thorned stalk.

Last week’s rose, all tilted head
and curled lip, says,
‘If y’ want a piece o’ me, darlin’,
you’re gonna have to be rough.’

(First published in Sotto)

The drug man

Dream
A cable strung across a room

Songs pegged out to dry / Men
practising music / Rockn
Jaunty / Intense / Guitars
Basses / Voices / I tried

to join in / I tried to peg
my voice to the line / But
it wouldn’t hang / The drug man
practised his drug music / Took

requests for the next bar / The men
followed him to the next bar
to hear him play with his band / I couldn’t
follow the drug man / I had

to take my sick child
home

(From lemon oil)