Thursday, April 30, 2015

and because analytical types just aren't sexy - 01/05/2015


because I came here on my own
and stayed that way

because it was late
and a very long way
from where I want to be

because I was curious
if you were curious
if nothing else

because there is never
a singular reason
for anything to happen
or not to happen

because of the wine

because why not
live looking for reasons
to say yes, not no

because I just drift through this life
when not holding on too tight
I wanted to be held
because I thought you needed it
because I thought I needed it

because expectation is bad
but anticipation is good

because warmth
because touch
and smell
and taste
and skin
and hands
eyes and smiles
because hungry

because it was getting even later
the hour was full
where the whole day before it
had been empty

because with nowhere else to go
when we talked closer and closer
for a few moments there

it didn't feel so bad




Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Just a moment - 29/04/2015


corner of a city block
I'm waiting for a friend to show
notice-myself looking
at each attractive woman I notice
just a little too long
hoping each of them didn't
and I'm trying to stop doing it

wondering why my legs hurt
from a boxing class
more than my arms
chewing over the film I saw
I'm not sure I liked it
I'm thinking
how much I would
urban air
without smokers around

mentally I'm high-fiving
every cyclist
braving the grid
mentally I'm running
every light cycle
and my predictable eyes
are kept on the road
nobody notices

still waiting for a friend
I'm writing myself
into this corner
at a crossroads
of my life
and fuck this traffic

happy to be here
having a moment
I'm making a solitude
that you can call a peace.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Bottled Up - 28/04/2015


sits there looking at that bottle
and it's everything in the world
he wants right now

knows full well what happens
when that lid pops
won't be any better this time
probably a little worse
lots of things have been bad
for him
or he's been bad
for them

this is not the first night
he's sat here alone
won't be the last either
staring at that liquid
the light it catches

bottled up
fingers twisting
on the neck
sometimes does
sometimes does not

room with one light on
a little amber lamp
the only room
inhabited in the house
nothing happens here
without him throwing a switch

in all that blank space
in all that silence
keeps asking dark
how he got here

no coward
yet for all said
that he wants
to give up
or stop doing
or leave behind
so far
he hasn't been
brave enough to look at
what he's willing to take on
and start doing instead

looking at that bottle
he cannot see

what he wants, besides the not wanting




Sunday, April 26, 2015

Days are numbered - 27/04/2015


a panic I get
it comes on
while trying to do
the last five push ups

a voice telling me
it's all useless
I can't do it
tells me to stop
makes me feel small

ribbing me
about how much l shake
or my chest hurts
how wonky my elbows are

hard to beat, sometimes
I do, sometimes
I'll just not do the last five
or even ten less
to avoid it altogether

very particular type of panic
that makes it scary
to go down onto the rug
but makes it all the more
when you plant
a foot flat
stand back up

beat that voice
drowned it out
pushed it down

lately I haven't been
able to leave that feeling
that voice
behind on the rug

there are days happening
that feel like my whole life
is going to drop a knee
and come off ten short

not good enough
not strong enough
not enough-enough

fear and doubt
and all the weight of yourself
on shaky elbows
and slumped guts

almost there
adding up in tens
almost there
in breaths of two
almost there
shut the fuck you I'm
almost there

I am almost
counting down five
four three





Sunday, April 19, 2015

feet first - 20/04/2015


I want to shoot first
reschedule our thing
to never
call someone just to tell them
not to call me again
lecture people on how
they shouldn't lecture people
call all the optimists
start a conversation
just to kill it
open a door
just to slam it

sit here in the mess
preserve my indignity
as a crime scene
waiting for you to come look
waiting to be right
about something
about anything
accuse the room
with all the told-you-so
accumulated cred
of a post natural disaster

none of these things
I do
interior monlogue slips gears
out of necessity
out of the front door
and pushed into breaking
the cycle

another ride
there's nothing to be right about
out here I
sing just as badly
as I do loudly

flaunt traffic safety
dress dark
sweat through the rain
go really-really fast
really far
until there's no more go

I uh, probably just neeeded
a little air
I need that a lot
forgot what
I was so worked about
as I remember

how much I love cycling




Friday, April 17, 2015

For The Swim Back - 18/04/2015


run sucker run
before they figure out
that you don't have
any of this figured out

before they see the stains
all over your honesty
and the excuses threaded
through the seem

run sucker run
before want their money back
or they realise that the magic beans
won't grow
no giants
refund the cow
sour the milk
the apology wrench
in the food bowl

don't just stand here
soaking wet in the middle
of an interview stopped cold
run you fuck
and at least try
to get away with it

every time you've answered the question
of why you went out there alone
you're less and less certain
as to the answers

you're less
and less certain
you're less

and less




Thursday, April 16, 2015

Poetry Guy - 17/04/2015


Walking down Sydney road minding my own business when some dude hanging out a car window, amidst the crawling traffic yells out at me...


Says he saw me perform Wednesday night. Says he loved the stuff I did, especially that last one. I told him he just made my day. Because he did. We're both smiling big now.

I was on my way to the post office, to send out my second-last copy of my third printing of my first book.

I forget sometimes that I have something to offer people. Something of value. I love writing and performing. I dont like getting messages from people wanting favours from me they don't deserve. I don't like seeing what has currency at the moment and who we're not hearing more from. Most of all I don't like thinking back on all the years wasted energy I gave trying to help, and trying to hurt, the other poets.

But I love the work. I like the ferocious creativity I can still feel wanting to come out of me. I like being these words, for people, in front of people.

It's pretty good.

- Randall Stephens, poetry guy


Sunday, April 12, 2015

Post - 11/04/2015


I'm here
I'm also not
at the party
on facebook
on my timeline
on my fifth cider
at the eleventh hour
leaning against this post
that I just made online
for support

far too sober
far too early
too late
too scared
of not talking
to people
to be around the people

tell other people in writing
sitting on your front porch
punching touch screen dark
having conversations
that you cannot hear

here also not
asking why
it's better to be alone
than just feel alone
when you're not,
asking myself

can I go now?




Friday, April 10, 2015

Binge - 11/04/2015


I once ate a whole Friday night by myself

no plate or cutlery
just big greedy fistfulls
of however much I could stuff
down my throat before Saturday
or anyone else
came along to snatch it away
from me

hunger gross and desperate
oh so desperate
scoffed it down dry
never chewing properly
small wonder there was
little bits of paper napkin
stuck in my teeth after

fell in love
with the taste left behind
in my own mouth
though it might just've been
from licking knuckles

worse still is that an hour later
I already wanted another one
despite being sick
bloated and overstuffed

all I felt was empty.



Sunday, April 5, 2015

Volume - 06/04/2015


when nothing
makes sense to you
get on the pedals
ride fast and angry
into a cold night
something in your ears
drowning out loud
all the noise outside
and inside your head

swerve and bank
when you don't have to
run traffic lights
when you don't need to
sing along
at the top of your lungs
especially when
there's no words

to this music