Sunday, March 7, 2010


Always on
my grandmother’s
bedroom wall, a picture
of a boy and a girl
climbing a tree
to a nest,
and now

Seven months and
still not showing

but, riding on the back
of the ute I’m feeling the weight
of the baby with every bump
hard on my bladder

The empty quiet
immense in the trees
circles us

The boys are shooting
rabbits. One, hit, backflips
about a metre into the air
and your father stands
in front of me grinning
His brown fingers slip quickly
into the limp body,
tiny but deep

They slide in and draw out
a glistening mass of pink
shapes, tied in a clump
Holds them out
toward me

The fresh, simple presence
of the dead mother
in his other hand

He laughs and says- I reckon
you’ll give us this many
-good thing
not all at once eh?

and there's another here > Another Lost Shark and if you keep following the links you'll find more :)


Bryan J Zimmerman said...

Interesting poem.

Upon reading this poem for the first time, I interpreted the two individuals climbing the tree as a possible metaphor for animals; maybe squirrels.

As I continued to read, the poem became increasingly abstract as it turned from past tense to present tense rather suddenly, causing me to wonder what the photo had to do with the woman riding in the back of the ute (what exactly is an ute if I may ask?).

The poem ends with the woman's family shooting rabbits with a sly denotation by the father, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

I think this is a wonderful poem, but am still a bit confused how the picture in the Grandmother's room plays into the grand scheme?

Amanda Joy said...

I can't begin to tell you how much I love the idea that the two individuals climbing the tree might be squirrels Bryan!

Sorry about the change of tense Bryan, I did try to do it fairly gently.. I may have forgotten to double d'clutch ;)

& Ute, well this is the best I could do googling.. then ...such a faux pas! I lost the page & can't accredit it.. it was a very reputable page though, of that I'm sure ;)
A pickup truck (or pick-up truck or simply pickup) is a light motor vehicle with an open-top rear cargo area (bed) which is almost always separated from the cab to allow for chassis flex when carrying or pulling heavy loads.[citation needed]

Several North American vehicles, the Chevrolet El Camino, Ford Ranchero, and Honda Ridgeline and Subaru Baja have beds, but are not technically trucks[citation needed]. Although the El Camino and the Ranchero were built with body-on-frame architectures, they were based on existing station wagon platforms, while the Ridgeline uses a spot welded sheet steel monocoque (unibody) chassis in the same style as modern passenger cars. Trucks typically have either a tubular or channel rail chassis with a fully floating cab and separate cargo section to allow for chassis flex and prevent warping of the sheetmetal. The sheet steel in both of these sections is not a stressed member. A combination of the two styles, monocoque cab and engine bay welded to a 'c' section chassis rear is offered in Australia. It is known as the 'one tonner' because it is rated to carry some 250 kg (551 lb) more than the all monocoque style.[citation needed]

Vehicles like the Holden Ute and FPV Pursuit, colloquially called a ute or utility (from "Coupe utility") in Australia and New Zealand, are known in South Africa as a bakkie (pronounced "bucky"),in Romania as "slipper", in Egypt as "half truck", and in Israel as a tender. Panel vans, popular in Australia during the 1970s, were based on ute chassis; known in Egypt as "box".[citation needed] Coupé utilities and panel vans usually have an integral cargo bed behind the cabin with unibody or monocoque construction like automobiles.

thanks Bryan!

ranfuchs said...

Isn't it amazing how memories unfold. Something triggers you, and they unfold, in a way in a way connected only by your unconscious mind

Larry Kuechlin said...

I'm a fairly brave man, but I am not sure I am brave enough to tell an owner of a Ranchero or El Camino that they do not own a truck.

A Subaru is right out, though. =)

As with all your work, the true emotions of this run deep, but I do love the more visceral images within the narrative of this story.

I love your work, Amanda.


Jé Maverick said...

Yep. That's about what I'd say if I held up a bunch of premmie bunnys. Excuse me if I recoil.

A tad ocker? :D

This is brilliant, with an extremely subtle shift between the illusions of our fantasies and the starkness of it all. Gotta love the starkness. It just creeps up and, pow - straight to the moon! Nice work, poetry lady.

Miss Jane said...

"Something triggers you . . ."

Stirring write. The ending made me flip and recoil as well.

I rode right along with this one from the fairytale beginning to the bloody end.

Well done.

Jhon Baker said...

All of those things would be technically considered trucks. [citation - dictionary, US DMV classification] that said I have little truck with you believing anything you wish. As for the poem - I think it is two poems and reads better that way. Divide them after "the empty quiet" verse. It reads rather rough, not unlike the ride in the poem, as two poems it works very well with each a small call to the other.

Kap said...

I've missed reading you.

tania lamond said...

as always a beautiful narrative from you. i shed a tear when reading remembering our chats about said day.

life is so real is it not...

Amanda Joy said...

Thanks everyone for commenting, your feedback all means so much to me.

Interesting thoughts Jhon, This is part of a MUCH longer poem, or really a series of poems, based on time I spent pregnant & married at 21 in a country town. So yes, there may be more definition required yet. I'll certainly take it on board.

Miss Jane> XX

Ms Lamond> XX

Je > X and :P for the P.L. thing AGAIN


Amanda Joy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Another Lost Shark said...

Can't wait to hear you read your work in the live setting again Amanda... roll on April is all I can say!

Another Lost Shark said...

Can't wait to hear you read your poems again in the live setting. All I can say is roll on April!

Amanda Joy said...

I'm really excited about it too Graham! Not too far off now!

Amanda Joy said...

Oh & Noah! thanks.. Great to 'see' you! I will be posting more often here & at myspace again from hereon in :)

Anonymous said...

it have left me somewhat a blaze, for all the things been said and more..
it is something i would rather have in print, holding it with my hands and eyes to read over and over. then wait and read it again...

Amanda Joy said...

That's a huge compliment Dhyan, thank you for it.. I have a tendancy to favour all things in a temporal setting ;) It is a big thing to think somethings worth preserving for a revisit!

Amanda Joy said...

That's a huge compliment Dhyan, thank you for it.. I have a tendancy to favour all things in a temporal setting ;) It is a big thing to think somethings worth preserving for a revisit!

Amanda Joy said...

jeez louweeze! what's with this double comment crap! dang dang & dang again!

Bryan J Zimmerman said...

Thank you for clearing up the usage of the word "Ute."

Carlos F said...

hey amanda my name is Carlos i am from Puerto Rico, which is in the Caribbean and i am doing a paper on your poem. the first time i read it i found it fascinating and my teacher loved it! the more i read it the more i liked it.. its outstanding! i am just wondering if you could give me an insight of what the general theme your poem is? like in a single phrase or sentence resume the narration of this harsh, but real event of maternity. thanks!

Lisa said...

Great poems, wonderful site. Thanks for sharing.