Every python I caught had its name on the line.
On the most Atlantan of nights, I endeavour for three heads.
Each family ambition, all of the psychosis, builds to the time I bite back
repression. We live in refuge from psychic discontent —
dirty bounty blood money hangs dutifully in the balance.
Dopamine burns up like papers so we can smoke snakes out; No other
labour tugs my sinew like this. Above dirt hills it’s time to steer –
Khaki DC shoes and bodysuit, sweat fixing it to skin. Eminem shirt with faded image macro,
Slides flash across the view like lens flare, light binding me to this backdrop.
I’m caught in the viscerality of it as urgency comes. Reptilian brain
responds. Lungs turn destined, finally lactic. I jump, scream bloody
murder, the violence of the sun on its scaly back means I’m overdone. It’s
karmic how I came here at this specific time. I feel it same as I did in the dream,
anticipate teeth entering my thighs.
you strike out, parallel / to the sting in the
plots where oldies do square dance
This is the place known for retirement villages / Mile End
everything grossly abundant with clear sky dry nettles
— Big ones, forming their own maze. Near them, we play hookey.
Afterwards, Marcus is tut-tutted by my grandmother
What goes on in hushed vocal tones? / You can tell there’s a loaded thing in
the way she’s wiping / bumps that mean poison in
arterial skin. Dragging as heavy as the tension between the treatment
I’m as hyper-aware of the whole body echo as I ever had been —
(where do I start and where do other people end?) it
The washcloth gets covered with vinegar and oil
Dripping with it / embedding itself into deep memory
And brushed, gradually, over the affected area.
For the rest of the afternoon, we are told to keep cool while
rain spots linger outside. And most importantly, Please! Do not cry.
Kneeling on the matchbox kitchen floor and the cigarette smoke from the living room
mixes with incense, makes communion with daytime telly. It’s a nothing
contentedness / distant ambience. Like Bildungsroman boys
running into dangerous outlier counties, we’re
peripheral evidence making the story.
But broken pieces last forever.
Jonno Revanche is a writer currently based between Sydney and Adelaide on Gadigal/Kaurna land. They are interested in exploring the residue of ephemeral sub-cultures, and geographical, psychological, emotional experiences from beyond the margins.