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Poem: Tilting

Books & Poetry

A conversation from a classic tale is the subject of this week’s Poet’s Corner contribution from James Walton.

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of Don Quixote, Sancho Panza, and el rucio

Sancho, it is a time to hurry
this ochre land of sulphur
is poultice to a failing quest
stalked by my own journey
I grow afraid these robes
of castaway identity bleed.

Don, it is time to sit and eat
take this moment of sand
remember we scolded those merchants
who in the village square
put out the eyes of bullfinches
to make them sing the better.

Fools, I have carried your puny world
of silliness a donkey pretending to be a horse
my burden the weight of aspired hope
one walks the other talks
my bray of windmills calculating the distance
where the blind chorus circles before dropping.

James Walton lives in the South Gippsland region of Victoria in the old coal mining coastal town of Wonthaggi. He has been a librarian, farm labourer, cattle breeder, and mostly a public-sector union official. His poetry has been published in many anthologies, journals and newspapers. He has been shortlisted for the Australian Catholic University National Literature Prize, the Melbourne Poets Union International Prize, and the Irish James Tate Prize. His poetry collections include ‘The Leviathan’s Apprentice’, ‘Walking Through Fences’, the forthcoming ‘Unstill Mosaics’, More of his poetry can be found here.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems of up to 40 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to Submissions should be in the body of the email, not as attachments. A poetry book will be awarded to each accepted contributor.

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