Feeling too lazy to put up an actual post, so as a special treat, here are a couple of extracts from Les Murray's new collection, The Biplane Houses:
The Kitchen Grammars
The verb in a Sanscrit or Farsi
or Latin or Japanese sentence
most frequently comes last,
as if the ingredients and spices
only after collection, measure and
even preservation might get cooked.
To all these cuisines renown attaches.
It's the opening of a Celtic sentence
is a verb. And it was more fire and pot
for us very often than ingredients.
Had we not fed our severed heads on poetry
final might have been our fame's starvation.
Upholding cuisines for us are the French
to be counting in scores and called Gallic.
In English and many more, in Chinese
the verb surrounds itself nucleus-fashion
with its subjects and qualifiers.
Down every slope of the wok they go
to the spitting middle, to be sauced,
ladled, lidded, steamed, flipped back up,
becoming verbs themselves often
and the calm egg centres the meatloaf.
from The Nostril Songs
The kingdom of ghosts
has two nostril doors
like the McDonald's symbol.
You are summoned to breathe
the air of another time
that is home, that is desperate,
the tinctures, the sachets.
You yourself are a ghost.
If you were there
you are still there -
even if you're alive
out in the world of joking.
When I was pregnant,
says your sister, my nose
suddenly went acute:
I smelled which jars and cartons
were opened, rooms away,
which neighbours were in oestrus,
that approach of death in sweat.
I smelled termites in house-framing
all through a town, that mealy taint.
It all became as terrible
as completely true gossip
would be. Then it faded,
as if my baby had learned
enough, and stopped its
strange unhuman education.
from Twelve Poems
Lying back so smugly
phallic, the ampersand
in the deckchair of itself.
Creek pools, grown top-heavy,
are speaking silver-age verse
through their gravel beards.
A spider walking
in circles is celebrating
the birthday of logic.