AWOL Week #14 Responses
This week’s task was to write something with the title ‘This is not a [Poem][Story] about…’ in the style of Victoria Adukwei Bulley’s poem ‘This is not a Poem about Parakeets’.
This Poem is not about Parakeets
On the bus back, two men make noise and all else
falls silent, or leans away. One woman gets off
altogether. I pull my headphones out. The air
thickens. The men are angry. Words leave their
mouths and hit the windows like flies. They’re
everywhere, everywhere you look. I’ve got seven
stops left. What we want is our country back.
My armpits tingle with sweat. I want to throw
something and then leave. Is that so much to ask?
I’m nowhere near home, so instead I think about the
parakeets that live on my road. They take up all the
housing. I want to tell the men how the parakeets
got here. All they do is take our jobs. How they
were brought here in the ’60s for a film, and then
escaped. They’re scroungers. I want to tell them
how despite the bad weather they never lost their
songs. Why are they so noisy? How none of April’s
showers ever washed their colours off. They don’t
even try to blend in. Or how these birds are so smart
they can talk human. They don’t even speak proper
English. The men keep moaning. It’s my freedom of
speech. I want to ask if they’ve seen these creatures
fly, these emerald green parakeets that live near my
home, I want to tell them about the brightest, most
beautiful birds I’ve ever known.
Victoria Adukwei Bulley
It’s Not About The Night by elisheva katz
It’s Not About The Night
And even now
Even now when winter skies are splintered grey on a summer’s day, I can still feel the dread of the silent paralysis of all those years ago, as you killed me ten million times, with your double forked serpent’s tongue of Venom. It was not the first time I had been killed this way, and no doubt there are many more dying such a death as this.
Always did you push me into the night, until the night I became. Stole my light did you, and without my light I grew ever weaker, lost in the depths of loneliness. This is how I lived for so very long, that I had forgotten what it was to feel the warmth of the sun upon my skin. But never again will I let you put out my light. With my last breath that leaves my body, I will not depart from this world beaten down, I will leave with wings of iron steel flying into a beauty never ending. For my light will not be hidden by your hate and envy. This light within me will be shining long after yours has faded.
Don’t you know! Did nobody ever tell you!
It is a sin to hide your light
But it is a bigger sin to hide someone else’s light
We all have a purpose in life, every life is significant, every life matters
Every life deserves to live
Written by elisheva katz
June 20th 2020
This is not about lock-down Sunday by Jodi Glass
This is not about lock-down Sunday
Lock down Sunday is a normal Sunday
Cooking with cupboard stores
Chicken near its date, is now fajitas
The leftover tortillas, will be fed to the chickens
Hoover hoovering, clothes a spinning
Starting afresh for Monday
Cereal spooned in mouths
Between channel flipping
And medication that cannot be
Swallowed with water alone
So hastily spread, a jam piece
Far too big snacks while binge watching
Hand rolled cigs, a good friend
And a favourite white top sparkling
With glitter, sitting the washing
Basket, even after the 90 degree wash
Floors mopped, hoover pads drying
Starting afresh for Monday
Jam and salsa only meet on a
Clearing the cupboards and
Eating crap. All in the day
of lock-down Sunday
But careless dripping, salsa and
Black current jam, new
This is not about Miroslav Holub. by Kathy Low
This is not about Miroslav Holub.
depressing postwar dingy street…
dilapidated door yielding to a dim
and fusty corridor, the packed earth
floor familiar under my feet. Home:
the muffled echo of soft memories.
This one, cobalt blue once, now faded
written on by the years and my palm.
The cool interior enfolds me
the afterimage of Southern Spain’s
glaring sun purple on my mind’s eye.
Months of claustrophobic rebreathed
air…an inept fire smouldering under a
sooty kettle. The cabin fever slows my
blood. I open the door to the icy
invitation of a low sun casting glittering
promise over a thousand miles of
Wonderland of Mine by Lotty
Wonderland of Mine
Will anyone please get me out of the rabbit hole before i enter into wonderland? Mind you, with all of the cruel and unusual things that have been happening in this world recently, falling into the magic and madness of Wonderland does not sound that bad
Oh, when I get down there the first thing I will do is look for the Mad Hatter and the March Hare to have a tea party throwing off my cares. Hopefully I won’t bump into a certain Queen. From what I hear she becomes hostile to you if you dare paint her precious Roses red. Then you’d better run before she says Off with her head!
I wonder if I will meet the White Rabbit, who seems to be constantly late for a very important date, but I wonder who it could be with? Maybe it’s Tweedledum and Tweedledee whose constant riddles and rhymes certainly left my brain Dizzee all the time.
Sadly, as I wake up, I realised this was all a dream that had formed in my head. This sort of land does not exist – only in children’s minds, as they rested their heads on soft pillows as their parents took them off to bed. The imagination of a child is so fragile and easily broken and yet I’m in my 30s now and mine is yet to be taken.
Lotte 21st June 2020
This chōka is not about the sun or the moon by Peter Marshall
This chōka is not about the sun or the moon
Summer dusk is slow,
growing as the sun descends
not far below horizon.
The distant hilltops
prop up a scarlet challenge
against the new crescent moon.
Pale curve of whiteness
leaves not a moment of doubt
as to what it wants to be.
And yet it dares not
show its placid dimpled face
when glaring orb hogs the sky.
Craters and mountains
long to prance in joyful arc
away from yellow monster.
Moon struggles vainly,
seeks to beat away harsh light,
and emerge in cooler night
Time will come around
when bother of hot brightness
eases back down once again.
Dark furred fox will skulk
along centreline of road,
in hunt for tasty morsels.
The moon will win out,
monochrome delight of night
to take happy place supreme,
though no single thing
will ever quite be the same
once this blaze of sun dies down.
2020 06 24 Peter Marshall