if i were a cliff cut by wind a whale breaching water or octaves in sand crunching aeons to feet to weave a page into coastal entangle -ment could you then hear how fraught this space or how easy rocks break what minds make distant in their proclivities for days \ if i were to trace a second- hand shoe spelling Vietnam from trade routes that constant sensation of movement in the commercial nature of each continuous moment in which lies the point of some kind of poetry or a line at least from which it extends honey-sweet thought a tea tree sense \ if i were a southerly or sand- stone patch exposed like bone eroding sonnets into the permo- triassic kneecap of a dipro- todon where broken glass is as green as grass is water clear and booming beneath SING- APORE sky’s steel orca sustained by the nutrients of a krill-like capital \ if i were a vista word- wrapped cliffs seasoned by salt each angle each shape a relation of wind minute ridge lines of rock repeating dissecting expressions in eye- socket shadows great chunks of cheek jagged grey nose frothing at lines of repetition in waves \ if i were water a spray of white twisting yellow flowers into questions i.e. how avoid a taxonomic acumen those categorical urges like trying to quit smoking having been born with a Winfield in your mouth as out on open water no other way to come here the outer limit of ego
Note: The last three lines of this work come from George Oppen’s poem, From a phrase of Simon Weil’s and some words of Hegel’s (2001, Selected Poems).
Jake Goetz lives by a drowned valley estuary on Gadigal land. His first poetry collection, meditations with passing water (Rabbit Poets Series, 2018), was shortlisted for the Queensland Premier’s Award in 2019. He is currently a PhD candidate in Writing at The Writing and Society Research Centre, WSU.