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Books & Poetry

Poem: Paperclips

Books & Poetry

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This homage to the humble paperclip comes from Rob Walker, an Adelaide Hills composer and writer of poetry and prose. Rob has three published poetry collections, with another forthcoming.


lie unobserved for eons in dormant drawers
aggregating into metallic daisy chains.

Surreptitious cleaners of ears
and fingernails

cursive O clones in exile from
the family Alphabet

keeping poems together long enough for the submission
to be passed over never-to-be-returned.

Unbespoked to be poked into computers
by the techno-clueless

emergency eject tools
for the CD

lockpickers / simcard removers /
pre-digital pdf attachers

diasporas of whole packets from office stationery
cupboards to dark domestic drawers

languishing unused but for income tax forms
and bundles of applications to The Bank.

Gliding on and off more subtly
than the body-piercing staple

more filable than the bulldog clip
they sit there waiting to be uncoiled

a steel trap of overlapping tongues
binding the disparate into one

never wear out yet live
uneventful dread-filled lives

awaiting the day they fall
into distracted idle hands,

their undoing

Rob Walker’s poems and short stories have been published in journals in Australia, the UK and US. In collaboration, his work has also appeared in places such as Adelaide’s Zephyr Quartet’s CD “A Rain from the Shadows”.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems up to 30 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to A poetry book will be awarded to each contributor.


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