new zealand electronic poetry centre
  
Brian Flaherty
3rd Birthday
 
 

Video: Real Media (Dial-Up / Broadband)

 
 

Travelling Saints

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Story of the Bagnard

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The Bracelet

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Travelling Saints

We go this way,
all the corners of creation
not knowing what we think
we know… forty sleeps
with my small heart counting.
I think of them often
the travelling saints
in perfect focus the sky
a vast blue paradise
there are legendary accounts
of the journey luminous
proof of a heavenly passage
this unexpected light
(the beauty of dissonant notes)
flies off like an axe blade
from its handle.


 

Story of the Bagnard

Nothing is absolute
the apartment lift unpredictable
has twice caught me
between floors suspended
in a pisspot cupboard
my resort with shuttered eyes
to hum a breath-heavy song
tap away with scuffed
monkey boots… I remember
the story of the bagnard
chosen to cut away
the last prop at the launch
if he jumps back before
the bow falls
he is released from prison
his edge a raw sense of life
coursing an instant before
the crushing weight.




The Bracelet

It was a cataclysm
thousands injured
the final death toll unknown
rescue teams were called
soup kitchens erected
five months they spent
sleeping on the street,
pissing in the rubble.
her neighbour the butcher
all his family lost
would play in the evenings
on a cracked saz
one string missing
kesik hoyrat
bozlak uzun hava

till his skin would tear
leaving a pattern
of blood petals
on the varnished mulberry
one evening when autumn
stars ringed the town
the saz disintegrated in his hands
and he wept uncontrollably
wrapping the strings
around his wrist
around and around
cutting off the flow.


 

 
 
©
Brian Flaherty 2004

 


 
   

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Last updated 15 December, 2004