pre-apocalyptic moresby

lonely h-art

Fire warnings always remind me of stranger days. And of the strangest of them all. The smell of smoke and the howl of dogs. Thinking of you all in the heat and the glaze.  Here’s my it’s too hot poem for ya.

The creaking, galvanised arms of shop awnings
screech down on their railings,
unfurled from their rooftop rests
to create futile shade
on days like these.

Fruits ripen and spoil, lettuce leaves putrefy
around their wilting hearts and
old people prepare to die
in a great evaporative expiration –
while I discover a very marvellous secret:

Every time you complain about the heat, you get one degree cooler.

it’s so bloody hot in here already – is the fucking air con on?
it was nightmare getting to work today, I waited over an hour
you could boil an egg on this car, in fact I would, if I had a fucking egg
sorry, but your arm is touching me, would you mind keeping it to your side?

and already, I’m only 39 degrees.

Bitching and moaning,
I make a light wind dance the early leaves,
my objection to the direction of the fan
is like a minted tea, clinking with cubes,
sub-zero draughts and gulps with every grumble.

The gripes, the grouses, the my house is sweat box, I haven’t slept in days,
are like standing before the open fridge,
saying fuck you to the environment and drinking juice out of the container,
dancing your fingers over the frosted edges of the freezer
and putting bags of peas under your armpits.

If I get really going, raising the mutter to a lament,
sharing with neighbours in collegial bouts of observation,
d’you realise it was almost forty by midday? I can,
with nought but the power of my whine
conjure up midgets to cast aimlessly about

throwing snow-dusted rose petals on the ground
which give off a chilly perfumed breeze.
They peel my clothing from me,
all the raw and bruising fabric falls,
the inflamed and wretched parts of me, now exposed,

deliciously raw and open to cooling air.
They shave my head –
little zephyrs kiss my naked skull
and the midgets pinch my nipples
with cheeky icy fingers.

Satan crawls up from a drain on Smith St
and even he looks sweaty –
the junkies ignore him
but I laugh, and laugh, and laugh
and let the poor fuck in on my very marvellous secret.

By Eleanor Jackson

Eleanor Jackson is a Filipino Australian poet, performer, arts producer, cyclist, writer, gal about town, feminist, freewheeler, and friend.

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