Author: Ian C. Smith

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Around the world in 18 ways

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 31 July 2018

    In Tahiti I fall ill, bronchitis amid humid splendour. At a summer camp in Dutchess County I get the sack. Cops warn me for hitch-hiking after sundown in Maine. In the wintry Cotswolds I wheeze in a bedewed attic. A lost aunt is found in Liverpool post-Toxteth.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Germaine Greer at Heathrow

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 26 February 2018
    1 Comment

    I once read The Female Eunuch, the only bloke taking a course on feminism, admired Greer's chutzpah, knew she lived in England where I came to dwell on the edge of belonging. I mourn unplanned lives, mine, others', back stories, each of us carrying private clouds of sadness. What happened next, that distant dawn?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Poems for Anzac Day

    • Jena Woodhouse and Ian C. Smith
    • 24 April 2017
    2 Comments

    Now, the forces of annihilation once again cohere, as if this were a valve in history's cardiac arrhythmia that faltered and unleashed a haemorrhage of horror, trauma, fear. The damask roses bloom unharvested in devastated fields. Their perfume cannot mask the stench that permeates the air, the atmosphere of dread, of mute despair. But when the juggernaut of war is redeployed elsewhere, the fragrant fields will come into their own, if there are hands to care.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Mme. Blanchard hits the roof

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 03 April 2017

    Riding her gondola, a skimpy thing like herself, she sees her balloon ablaze, begins her descent, feathered hat lost, a rushed farewell performance. The house roof's pitch steep, her rigging tangled, fire almost out, burned, broken, she can't hang on, she who once remained aloft all night over Rome.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Umpire, a local buffoon

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 10 May 2016

    An honest tackle trucks two junior footballers tangled across the boundary line of the arena before the barrier between hoi polloi and gladiators, the tackler fouled again, the ball out of play, an elbow stab to the ribs, a knee seeking a crotch in this small town that yearns to be a contender, the fair team fitter, faster, braver, ahead.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    A faithful woman visits me weekly

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 18 November 2014
    1 Comment

    Supplying food, whisky, news, loving sex. All this on a pine-scented mountain. I trim my stark white beard, shampoo, sweep, spray, squeegee and swipe. The hour you drive up our steep hill I open our front gates like a greeting.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    My father's memorial service gets edgy

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 21 May 2013
    1 Comment

    Smoke pours from a meter box outside. Firemen scurry like comic extras, unable to locate the smoke's source. Spaced apart in orderly rows we swivel, casting sideways glances through tall windows. Organist and minister struggle with focus.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Dreams of pulling Australia out of its slump

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 31 January 2012

    Although most are probably long dead, they seem happy, even excited. Perhaps they will toss triumphant hats. The wind might favour their team, even steal tossed hats, but not hope.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Brother of a suicide and war dead

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 12 July 2011
    1 Comment

    His mother quoted Shakespeare, preferred her husband to their children, placing her faith in him, gin, and ghosts ... When she turned up breast cancer's card she hugged her suffering to herself.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Photographing Paris

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 11 May 2010

    mapping the cobbled Parisian dawn .. in search of juxtaposition .. stairways, upturned street vendors' carts .. unglamorous prostitutes, pedlars .. the stillness of odd, aged architecture .. angles, spaces awash with light

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Kisses of life and death

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 06 October 2009
    1 Comment

    The kiss of peace in the Eucharist .. Judas' kiss of death, CPR's of life .. Georgie Porgie's, spin the bottle's .. the kiss of a rolling billiard ball .. Gene Simmons' great tongue Kiss

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    My well planned salvation

    • Ian C. Smith
    • 31 March 2009

    All along the cell-block .. The singing echoes like a threat .. voice flatter than Bob Dylan's .. loaded with false jocularity .. his sweat sour in the grey slot

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