breakfast at the end of a financial year

bodies become corpses at the whim
of a machine gun rising up from
carthaginian waves    no more suntans
or lotophagi breakfasts by the sea
houellebecq you warned us but who
is so cognisant when a holiday is
urgent like a first or last resort
v-a-c-a-t-i-o-n    wimbledon is
second best      squawks of cockatoo
hijack talk of those treasonable
tweets      tennis brats make threats
parents slurp back ego shakes
as children morph to instant geniuses
or genii on rapid break-the-fast tv
coffee brews avocado smash and
feta bites into the burnished toast
the acropolis in the distance stoic and
forlorn    syntagma spreads like vertigo-a-go
-go; here comes cautionary ritsos as he drags
his bags of stones, scratching like the claws
of tiny owls along the ground      will those
sydney lentil counters graduate to quinoa
numerology dukka delphics million dollar
bedsits or simply chocolate frogs      just
mind the gap between the trireme and the pier
dock    no ATMs ahoy    fate curves like a recycled
frisbee in search of destiny —


Joanne Burns

Joanne Burns is a Sydney poet. Her most recent book is brush (Giramondo Publishing 2014). She has been a teacher of English and creative writing and has been performing her work since the 1970s.

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