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From: Vol.04 N.01 – Where to feel now

Where Our and Reprise

by Toby Davidson

Where Our


Bipeds living separate lives emote securely to a circle of screens.

Keypads flash down Loma Street walls in reds and greens, ersatz

shipping lanes. Oxidise space. Hypnotise. Lay waste, like the first


sold a shooter’s paradise—kangaroos, bronzewings splashing

from jarrah and wattle of quarried North Cottesloe, that feral,

goannaed ‘Siberia’. Teamsters, gamblers, camel races, picnicked


attempts at a ragged Brighton, baby contests for unsecured plots.

Noongar, West Indian, Chinese hawkers with spices, sponges,

contraptions, fisherfolk trading shock at that attack, the look


of the kid hauled grey from a dancing bosom meant to cure

everything. Jetty bands, parlour cars, a twelve-foot tiger strung

pointedly—attractions worth queuing for. ‘Costume, Men


and Women: Dress of dark material, serge, flannel or flannelette,

extending over the shoulder to the knee. Those in swimsuits

should not loiter.’ This was before the advent of the groyne.





Encased museum whispers of the sky world flit the masks

of tinctured-only non-complaint binding sunken sorrow.

Surfacing all golden-eyed, they shield themselves

with infant hands, plug to something in their laps

or spurn announcements, then in French, to sever

open glory lest their waxen slack-jawed memberships

to numinous imposture fail. Sleepers paw at rays

the very disc-clouds bear in numbers. Above (you choose)

the Solomons, lilac streaks hone cometlike to pinkest

cuttlefish quills. You, Half-Planet, hide upon, below,

as a wreathed blue range and a wing: Canadian birds

fly arrowhead Vs, Australians loose barometric sheathes

and so they hang cross-hatched in economy, ruffling wavy

suns which burst clipped dreams and return to you proudly.

Published: January 2017
Toby Davidson

is a West Australian poet now living in Sydney as a lecturer at Macquarie University. He is the editor of Francis Webb’s Collected Poems (2011) and author of the critical study Christian Mysticism and Australian Poetry (2013). His first collection of poetry is Beast Language (2012).

An Australian and international
journal of ecopoetry and ecopoetics.

Plumwood Mountain Journal is created on the unceded lands of the Gadigal and Wangal people of the Eora Nation. We pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and to elders past, present and future. We also acknowledge all traditional custodians of the lands this journal reaches.