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Books & Poetry

Poem: Elegy to be read at the Grampians

Books & Poetry

This week’s Poet’s Corner contribution is from Ivan Jankovic

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Elegy to be read at the Grampians

at roughly quarter past five in the morning
the curvature of your back sways in milk moon
as you think about sunset over the Grampians
and I think about knowing you for a very long time

what that would mean is I wake you up
quite abruptly, quite rudely
(smile as I see you smile)
to take us out through the French doors
onto a wet and creaky patio
over the wet and bucolic moor
onto a rude and cloudy beach
where words have not been spoken since antiquity

and meet a perturbed, uncertain stare
lips that move in many tongues
to search for an answer

as if to say
“What is this?
I do not understand this at all”

and I do not suggest for a moment
there is anything to say or do
but clasp the hands that held this heart
and touch the lips that bend this flesh

as if to say
very nearly
“Neither do I”

but what I say
when we have had our fill
and daylight breaks the scene
what I say is
that this
is even better
than I could have hoped for

Ivan Jankovic is studying law and arts at Adelaide University. In 2021 he was awarded the University’s Bundey Prize for English Verse, and in 2017 he was shortlisted for the Australian Book Review’s Peter Carey Short Story Award. In 2021 Ivan edited the university’s student magazine, ‘On Dit’.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems of up to 40 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to Submissions should be in the body of the email, not as attachments.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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