Thursday, June 6, 2013

This will be a long post. Every day I'm musing on the theme of "glass".

1 June 13

On the Meaning of the Word

I prefer mugs
even for water.
There's something
solid about water
in china, porcelain,
ceramic or even
handmade pottery.
Imagine the clay
seizing and settling
fluid molecules.

A glass can be fashioned
out of plastic, of course.
Ours are illustrated
with Cadbury Milk
and Freddo logos. 
The frog rides a go kart,
performs a fabulous ollie
on a blue skateboard
surfs a wave, and dances
like Mickey Mouse.
This demonstrates the power
of chocolate when shaped
as frogs and dressed in
yellow t-shirts. The Dairy Milk
image appears to repel
the idea of water.

On the other hand
glass can sing
its crystal lips
loving the stroke
of a wet finger.

2 June 13

When you think about
those trillions of coloured bottles
holding elixirs of desire
the promise of oblivion
the temptation to become
irresponsible and hit someone
you are glad glassblowers
have been superseded
in a world of mass production
and can breathe life into art.

But how does a bottle of red
get endowed with that elegant
presence, even when lying down
on the wine rack in the dark?

3 June 13

Wherever glittering chips have fallen
there has been a happy football fan
or two or ten, or a party of teens
not yet clear this earth belongs
to them, its brittle booby traps
their future, even as the brief tinkle
challenges the eternal stolidity of stars.

4 June 13

A photo behind glass 
gains a gleaming
affirmation of beauty.

5 June 13

Moments in the Big Smoke

While her carafe and glass of water
present a bright beech-coloured face
to the ceiling and entertain grey
planes of other less organic matter,
her computer refuses to recognise
the room's inbuilt projector.

We must move to a room whose
fourth wall is all glass, and without
the play of light on restless water.

Three orange-jacketed
leap onto the tram
I'm running to catch
not wanting to wait
in the cold
around me
something is disturbed
not quite right
on a pavement
so close to the State
Library of Victoria
its pillared presence
all dignity, duty
diligence of care
these unsettling screams
and reckless jerky moves
a gang bowling like water 
into a plughole - circling
fighting - a downward
and on the paralysed tram
the men in orange ask,
"Which windows?"
examine the language
of scratches and gashes
as if for insight
yet speak without
"It could've been worse.
Sometimes they spray paint
the floor, or write with black
texta so you can't sit
on the seats."

And I look at bright
newly-upholstered seats
thinking about
how it takes a village
to raise a child but
how big must a city be
to teach that child
the language of adulthood?

6 June 13

Journey Into Illusion

I'm never alone on a train.
Even if I sit across two seats
read a book and eat chips
that crunch and crackle loudly
in the almost-empty carriage.

I'm never alone because
there's my counterpart
clear as a coloured photocopy
in the dark window.

I study my hat
my posture
adjust the way 
I sit
from watching her.

Fellow-travellers are also etched
against tonight's sky's black canvas.
Or pewter.
But - HEY! We disappear
illuminated by a station's
attempt at reassuring daylight.

I await my encore,
the dark landscape
a backdrop to my
resurrection: and
there I am!

The reflection is like a sidecar
or replica attached to the body
of our caterpillar/Bombardier.

Beyond our two vehicles
a mat of light on horizon &
occasional orange streaks
marking closer streets.

Cars' blue and white eyes
float bodiless between 
level ranks of highway
lights, avenues of honour.

All light suspended by 
invisible thread or ink
and no wonder they say
reflection is illusion.

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