Paul Summers






there are ghosts

in the safety glass,


obese & smile-less,

& vaguely familiar;


trapped like fossils

in cages of nostalgia.


choking on nuggets

of lethargic vowels,


a brood of pale biddies

moan about weather,


a toddler is hamstrung

by the weight of a nappy;


& somewhere between

them, an irreparable union.




christmas island, december 2010



heavy now as ballast lead, a weightless

baby drifts from vision. wide-eyed but


lifeless, melting in the twilight of expanding

depth. she waves in the drag of undertow &


saturated lungs. each gilded globe of fleeing

breath seeks refuge in the cusp of sky & sea.


each fragile bauble of misplaced hope exploded

in the tensions of a rolling swell. & heavy now


as ballast lead, their empty hearts grow cold

& dead. all dreams defunct in waking terror.


they melt into expanding depth. their muted

eyes accuse, though lacking any focus; they fix


like cadavers on points of consensus, their pupils

pulled like moths towards the light upon the hill.




Paul Summers © 2012




woorabinda, central queensland



beware the magi bearing gifts;

their votive grog & lavish guilt.


the former, laced; the latter,

the spike. shame & the shame


of shame. death & the death of

death. the snake will bite its tail;


& these mothers, their tongues.

a silence forged, a flawless edge


to hamstring progress. the birds

have flown. the kangaroos have


seen the light. the brumby bolted

to the downs. three score years &


ten of drought & flame, of blood &

shit congealing on this bitter earth.




Paul Summers © 2012