new zealand electronic poetry centre
 

J A C K   R O S S


 

Zen and the Art of America’s Next Top Model

 
 
Don’t listen to
what we say
but what we mean
 
when the dancer tried
not looking like
a dancer
 
at her next photo-shoot 

*
 
Now we’re in heaven
above the clouds
but soon
 
we’ll go back down
the semi-finalists
on Table Mountain
 
awful with energy

*

Miss Tyra
seven feet of bone & lust
rolling on the floor
 
displaying passion
screaming at a loser
to wipe that smirk
 
off her pinched face
 
*

The photo-shoot
inside
an open grave
 
for the girl
whose schoolmate
had just

passed away
 
*

Watching it with Simon
as I prompted him
to see the subtleties
 
you’ve got to write this, Jack
no-one would dream
the bollocks you think up
 
about this crap
 
*

Too commercial
not high fashion
not versatile enough
 
too young
too fat
too old
 
never too thin
 
*
 
The art of teaching
breaking down
the will
 
not because you’re right
because
they’ll never start to learn
 
without it
 

 

Auckland, April 2006



 
Free Love

(after André Breton)
 
Girl of the wood-ember hair
flash-photo wit
hourglass waist
otter-cub in the tiger’s jaws
bouquet of sunflowers in your mouth
teeth white mice tracks in the snow
teased-amber tongue
tongue stained blood-red by the Host
tongue of a Barbie batting her eyelids
alchemist’s tongue
lashes crayon slashes
swallowtail eyebrows
forehead fogged-up
greenhouse panes
champagne-flute shoulders
– dolphins butting through sea-ice –
matchstick wrists
card-sharp fingers          my Ace of Hearts
harvest-shock fingers
marten-fur armpits
(Midsummer bonfires
of blackbirds’ nests)
spindrift arms
ground fine as grain
skyrocket legs
sparking like clockwork                       or despair
calves shoots from the Rata tree
feet like initials
feet like keyrings          feet like bung-taps
pearl-barley neck
whitewater throat          (my love-nest
in the torrent’s bed)
night-walking breasts
sea-otter breasts
crucified breasts
rosebud nipples spiked with dew
belly like a folded fan
a giant claw
your back         a jump-jet hovering
quicksilver back
beacon back
nuque of the neck         a rolling stone
a glass that shatters in your hand
coracle hips
flared hips
pale as a peacock
tipped head-over-heels
asbestos bum
swansdown behind
Spring booty
leaf-dagger sex
sex panning for gold      platypus pussy
sex soft as anemone       jujube sweet
mirror sex
eyes pricked with tears
violet eyes          my magnetic north
nomad eyes
eyes water to a dying man
eyes one second from the chop
eyes deep as a well         eyes free as air                        eyes dry earth and eyes
                                                                                                                             cool fire
 


 

[first published in Magazine 3 (2005): 25-27, ed. Raewyn Alexander].


 


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Last updated 28 April, 2006