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Jacket 16 — March 2002   |   # 16  Contents   |   Homepage   |  Catalog   |    

Overland magazine feature

Ted Nielsen: pure duration

outside maintenance the hang of contracts
opens your face like a fleshy mirror to the waking sky
& statistics or the windscreen prevents egress,
the desire for sequence like a funny hat
at which the neighbours snicker,
blandly passing respects from the kitchen window
across the bay you used to swim
or thought you might, a different mobility
moves in like tourism, accreting the type of solitude
your parents paid for in fulsome dark,
tokens redeemed for cash & hints
of those curves & upgrades to lead the festival
& gather supplies, a queasy feeling on your final approach
to the details of realism eroding transition,
your shards learn to expand to fill the emptiness
that flippancy barely papers over as late night news
returns its baubles through the vacuum & cereal
starts to hiss & pop. travel evolves from your
sense of remove, or you attentuate the gain
& your signal starts fading out.

Ted Nielsen was born in 1968 in Townsville, Queensland. In 1999 his first collection of poetry, Search Engine, was published by Five Islands Press. This poem is reprinted from Wet Robot, a chapbook published by Vagabond Press in 2001. Ted Nielsen lives in Sydney.

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