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The possibility of poetry



Selected poems




You have to love happiness so hard it hurts

and even this for you is happiness


even when your demons

bless 'em


meet and have a drink together

playing a little two-up with your life


don’t worry about it

enjoy yourself


the view as you’re being tossed this way

and that



then sand


spectacular really

so spectacular that it matters little


if anyone’s placed

a hefty bet on you


or if you meet your end while soaring up

or tumbling down.



The Comrades


I met massive friends

on the clandestine boulevards


slow they were

as oil and tomatoes


happy as beans

from the secret gardens of Sardinia



and inky


red and redolent

as wine.





To have been given even

just the possibility of poetry


that was enough

that was more than enough.




John FalzonDr John Falzon is Senior Fellow, Inequality and Social Justice at Per Capita. He is a sociologist, poet and social justice advocate and was national CEO of the St Vincent de Paul Society in Australia from 2006 to 2018. He is a member of the Australian Services Union.


Topic tags: John Falzon, poetry



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Existing comments

Nice one John. Thanks

Anne Benjamin | 29 April 2020  

Testament! Why isn't 'poet' listed first in your occupations, Dr Falzon?

Pam | 29 April 2020  

Maybe Dr Falzon sees his other occupations particularly as a social justice advocate as of greater value to humanity and the common good. Pam. Many would agree with him on that! Many deserve justice but relatively few read or write poetry.

john frawley | 29 April 2020  

I loved 'UP', John! It showed me a side of you - the 'social justician' par excellence - that I instinctively sensed you must have. Fire and water in balance with each other as well as wild happiness and laughter to bring joy and respite to those you champion, as well as to those you love enough to take them on!

Michael Furtado | 01 May 2020  

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