Funny, thongs

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Selected poems





Funny, thongs, how they

make that thwack thwack noise:

Your ten little pistons push off the ground

and the earth calls back a little salute,

just a nudge, really: I’m here. So…


you’re still one of the moving ones?

Well, that’s nice. Don’t waste it. Yes,

I’ll be here. Always here. And we’ll

know each other better still,

in time, hereafter.



Bush drive


Once black, faded to a mottled pink,

the road stretches: a battered, sunburnt arm

in a vast and dusty kitchen,

our trickling car a rolling bead of sweat.

The grasping road tries, tries, tries

to reach

something right at the back

— no, still further back —

of the oven.



The unseen side of shade


Vast shelves of ice without penguins,

acres of unbaked meringues,

harvests of never-worn cotton,

untrodden uplands of snow,

mountains of unslept-on pillows,

platters of untasted cream,

all fringed with unbuyable gold

and the edge of an unfeathered wing.


Tower of Skulls, Again


Certain things need to happen

to keep the crops growing,

the sun rising, the rain falling.


The idol makes demands…


Of course, it’s a pity, in a way

no one’s claiming it’s ideal

and they haven’t done anything wrong

it’s nothing like that


(but they’re not like us, remember

no point thinking too much about it —

they probably don’t feel pain, it’s all so quick)


It’s just how we protect ourselves —

safeguard our Aztec lifestyles

our prosperity, our liberty

everything we’ve struggled for

the autonomy of our tribe —


Don’t you care? Don’t you care about that?



Sunrise over the chapel of the shroud, Turin


An ash-shaded shape,

an outline of bumps and dips,

cradling, silent:

then the happening


and nothing is the same.

The belling blow of light touches each ridge and fold. Like a peal it proceeds, imprinting all, uncontainable.

Birds fly, smoke rises.

The light echoes over trees, Roman remnants, cracked houses

and people, being born for today, again.




Katherine SpadaroKatherine Spadaro was born in Scotland, trained as a language academic, and is married with two adult children. She believes that poetry is one of the strongest things there is.

Main image: Women walking on street (Jez Timms/Unsplash)

Topic tags: Katherine Spadaro, poetry



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Existing comments

" . . . that thwack thwack noise" - Now there's a phrase Aussie English teachers could use to great effect in classrooms when introducing onomatopoeia. Let's hear it for the humble thong! (A refreshing touch of environmental optimism, too).
John RD | 16 September 2020


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