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The tyranny of the clock




Dragging something from the brain down through the body and into existence is an act of magic. The birth of a baby, birth of an average poem, or birth of an ugly skyscraper. Mum, artist, architect. All equal proof that humans are magic.



I leave behind a sort of residue, imprint or ghost of myself in each day I pass through. A version of me that's forever caught and trapped in every yesterday like a locked room. And as the years pass, each room and ghost ripens and blooms in the midnight light of my mind, sparkling until they're both distilled and purified from the original stress and troubles that firstly created them. Then they shine as pure colour. Summer changing to autumn.



It's funny how Netflix has branded, emblazoned and cuddled itself into the cotton-wool ball 'family life' and the 9-5. It nurses and swabs the psychic ailments of the full-time job through 'binge tv series watching'. Even the expression 'binge tv' is welcomed warmly by the most conservative people I know. What happened to old fashioned binge drinking while watching the moon?


The dog doesn't question how it wags its tail

As opposed to an 'AHA! moment', an 'AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHA! moment' is where you divinely and purely discover the truth over-and-over again so rapidly, the truth becomes combustible, propelling you through a loophole in the universe. The condensed speed of so much truth reels you with 'truth overload' and philosophical whiplash — the by-product of this revealing itself as what we know as 'laughter'.


The tyranny of the clock

Googled 'the tyranny of work' while at work this morn. And uncovered this great essay from the '40s by a Canadian anarchist, 'The Tyranny of the Clock'.

Then after reading it, thinking my jadedness of the nine-to-five was vindicated, I crossed the road at lunchtime where this tow-truck was waiting its turn at the lights. The trucker had 'Born on the Bayou' by Credence blasting through open windows. Thought he had an amazing sound system. Then realised he had a drum-kit set up on his dash and was going for it with his sticks in time to the tune. He made his day job look easy — and all of a sudden I felt like a small little angry man. He made my week.


Guardian angel

I often send texts to myself. Little ideas and mysteries. Curiosities and musings. Secret thoughts. One day someone responded to my little brain ditties: I had mindlessly swapped a single digit of my mobile number and had accidentally been sending my thoughts to a stranger. I asked this person if they'd like to be my honorary spirit and guardian angel. And they said yes.


There will be no more taking your pet to work day

I rang Nightline 3AW talkback radio a few weeks back. I was vetted. 'What's your name and where are you from? 'Darby from Footscray' I said. 'What do you want to talk to the boys about?' I said, 'I wanted to talk to the boys about how I often feel the compulsion to call my cats while I'm at work to chat with them — that the thought would comfort me — take the pain of working with ladder climbers and political animals away.' The guy added 'C'mon man, what about a recent political thing in the news, or something that's just happened today in the papers? That's rubbish. I'll put you on hold so you can rethink you topic'. Then I hung up.


Corpse worker

I've heard corpses' nails and hair keep growing days after death. And often while I'm at my 9-5 corporate desk, I look down at my nails and bite them back while thinking I need another haircut.


The magic of life

I tried to sell a $20 note I had received from the Tooth fairy on eBay for $1 as I finally found out that the Tooth fairy wasn't real — that the money wasn't really magic. The $20 note eventually auctioned for $16.50. So it looks like the going rate for learning that the Magic Of Life isn't real sets you back only about $3.50. The price of a coffee.


Fast, slow

Trees yawn and stretch with imperceptible, extreme slow motion. Aching and growing and awakening across countless sunrises through the Centuries. Unlike their twitchy bird visitors and homemakers who see time so imperceptibly fast. The universe secretly balancing itself out before our eyes.


True clouds

Clouds — once my favourite things — had been dead for years after working in 9-5 corporate land. Dead things floating in the skies. I couldn't see them truly. Months after quitting the corporate gig the cloud at sunset tonight came back to life and simply said 'Relax, don't try, give up, surrender, don't give a shit'.



I hear a grey ball of distant traffic noise through my bathroom toilet window. Am I giving more attention to that noise than I should? It's just static white noise. But I make it into a massive grey ball of sadness in my head.

In the same way I see a spring flower. It's just a spring flower. But no. It's a massive yellow throbbing ball of happiness.


Boy down a well

I lie belly down in a cloudless, full mooned field in the middle of nowhere at night. A black cat slips across the paddock in the distance like a marauding puddle of furry oil slicking under a skeletal, rusty truck. I'm somewhere in rural NSW, the sound of bugs all around. Bugs in the field. Bugs in my head. I'm hanging onto the long, thin grass as the moon begins its grip. So I grip harder to the grass, my legs hover in the air. The moon attempts to drag me upward into its white, hollow hole — an incandescent, primordial blind spider's egg. I look behind me, the squashed NASA rings glowing around the white hole appear now like a miracle and pulsate, the cosmos waving to me in all its ridiculous splendid glory. I laugh my head off as I'm being dragged skyward, hands still trying to grip the long grass. I'm like a boy being rescued down a well. I'm pulled towards the circle of light feet first, exactly how I attempted to come into this world. An open door. A small, perfectly round wound of light to be born out of this world and into another darkness.


Darby Hudson

Darby Hudson has been published in Eureka Street and Black Inc's Best Australian Poems, 2012 and 2013.

Topic tags: Poetry, Darby Hudson



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Existing comments

You don't belong in the corporate world Darby! My favourites: "The Tyranny of the Clock" and "The magic of life". The tooth fairy should make only a gold coin contribution.

Pam | 12 April 2016  

Always quirky, a true believer in the tooth fairy and a knowledgeable soul who truly believes that his cats have all the answers.

Gentle Geoff | 12 April 2016  

cheers pam! i'm breaking the fourth wall and replying to your lovely words. does anyone belong in the corporate world? probably. which scares me. cheers. d

darby | 12 April 2016  

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