Who buys my thoughts Buys not a cup of honey That sweetens every taste; He buys the throb, Of Young Africa’s soul, The soul of teeming millions, Hungry, naked, sick, Yearning, pleading, waiting.
Buys not false pretence Of oracles and tin gods; He buys the thoughts Projected by the mass Of restless youths who are born Into deep and clashing cultures, Sorting, questioning, watching.
Who buys my thoughts Buys the spirit of the age, The unquenching fire that smoulders And smoulders In every living heart That’s true and noble or suffering; It burns all o’er the earth, Destroying, chastening, cleansing.
We present this work in honor of the poet’s 125th birthday.
Life is fleeting, is fleeting and will never return. Listen to my advice: if a rich man promises you a good life, you must accept it. Life is fleeting, fleeting, and not even God will stop it. The best you can do is to enjoy life and forget your sorrows and pains. The days and the years elapse and happiness is elusive. You must not think either of suffering or of virtue: you must fully live your youth.
We present this work in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day.
The generations-old wine has strengthened me in my wanderings. The angry sword of pain and sorrow has not destroyed my treasure.
My people, my faith and my flowering—it has not chained my freedom. From under the sword I’ve cried out: I am a Jew!
The clever twists of Rabbi Akiva, the wis- dom of Isaiah’s words nourishing my thirst and my love, and fought against hate.
The zest of the Maccabbean heroes and Bar Kokhba’s blood boils in mine. From all the burnings at the stake I’ve cried out: I am a Jew!
And may my enemies be pierced by spears, those who are preparing a grave for me. Be- neath the flag of freedom I’ll yet have no end of pleasure. I’ll plant my vineyards and be the architect of my fat. I’ll yet dance on my enemies graves. I am a Jew!
In a white gully among fungus red Where serpent logs lay hissing at the air, I found a kangaroo. Tall dewy,dead, So like a woman, she lay silent there. Her ivory hands, black-nailed, crossed on her breast Her skin of sun and moon hues, fallen cold her brown eyes lay like rivers come to rest And death had made her black mouth harsh and old Beside her in the ashes I sat deep And mourned for her, but had no native song To flatter death, while down the ploughlands steep Dark young Camelli whistled loud and long, ‘Love, liberty and Italy are all.’ Broad golden was his breast against the sun I saw his wattle whip rise high and fall Across the slim mare’s flanks, and one by one She drew the furrows after her as he Flapped like a gull behind her, climbing high Chanting his oaths and lashing soundingly, While from the mare came once a blowing sigh. The dew upon the kangaroo’s white side Had melted. Time was whirling high around, Like the thin woomera, and from heaven wide He, the bull-roarer, made continuous sound Incarnate lay my country by my hand: Her long hot days, bushfires, and speaking rains Her mornings of opal and the copper band Of smoke around the sunlight on the plains. Globed in fire-bodies the meat- ants ran to taste her flesh and linked us as we lay, Forever Australian, listening to a man From careless Italy, swearing at our day. When golden-lipped, the eagle-hawks came down Hissing and whistling to eat of lovely her And the blowflies with their shields of purple brown Plied hatching to and fro across her fur, I burnt her with the logs, and stood all day Among the ashes, pressing home the flame Till woman, logs and dreams were scorched away And native with the night, that land from whence they came.
Oh, women of this land! There is no life, nothing. This is nothing but failure and grief. Death for us is hundred times Better than such a life. This life is nothing But a symbol of slavery. Beware, women of this land! Be friends to one another! Dissolve your links with men! Why do you take on the name of Your husband, though you have A name of your own?
We present this work in honor of the 15th anniversary of the poet’s death.
No one comes by way of the doughy track through straggly tea tree bush and gorse, past the hidden spring and bitter cress.
Under the chill moon’s light no one cares to look upon the drunken fence-posts and the gate white with moss.
No one except the wind saw the old place maker her final curtsy to the sky and earth:
and in no protesting sense did iron and barbed wire ease to the rust’s invasion nor twang more tautly to the wind’s slap and scream.
On the cream lorry or morning paper van no one comes, for no one will ever leave the golden city on the fussy train; and there will be no more waiting on the hill beside the quiet tree where the old place falters because no one comes anymore no one.
We present this work in honor of the poet’s 100th birthday.
Got a letter from a thrush. Come and see me compose. So I went. She stuck her beak into the ink and sputtered on to the manuscript. Then sang it. Tra la la tweet tweet warble warble ptui ptui. When she finished I was asked for an opinion. With a grave look I opined: Well it’s very good. Regular thrush music good range plenty of variety nice timbre. Look Cutler said thrush do you think it’s worth making a demodisc or a tape and going round the agents? I think it’s chart material. Look thrush I replied it could only succeed as a gimmick. Yea, I suppose, she tweeted and flew into a stump.
We present this work in honor of the Moroccan holiday, Proclamation of Independence.
I gather my confusion and my things My steps And the remaining illusions Of my body I run beyond time Beyond the vacant air And space
Yesterday I drew my open space here And dreamed a lot I sowed shade, and fruit, and crops around And with flames I wrote my poems… Yesterday I had plenty of time To embroider space with words. But today I am left with nothing But my dejection And the crumbs of yesterdays gone by
Thus I gather my things I wrap myself up in my own confusion And I run I run beyond time I propagate into the distance With neither shade Nor sun.