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Poems By Thomas White


Sex, Love and the Sea

The sea brought me sex, love.
I met my last girl friend here:
a black-leather jacketed Venus
from New Jersey
washed up like a gleaming oil slick.

Tonight the sea is rough - a
jealous, kinky lover it does
not want me to leave.
Violent undercurrents chain
my ankles in freezing cuffs.

But tonight I must be free:
plunging into the sea
with slashing breast strokes
and a curse,
I am a lean brown knife
stabbing the surf.

Winter Urban Party Going Scene

Neon light, toxic-ice and snow
piling up, until
the tops of the dripping brownstones
across from the cheap cafe
glow faintly
like an evil child's hellish ice cream cone.

Those corner fireplugs could be
little muggers,
squat and mean;
they look threatening
like they might refuse
to cooperate with the
fire department's machine

or just launch themselves at us.

At one dark cold deserted
intersection, a stop light programmed
a perpetual
"warning yellow,"
blinks faster and faster
as if someone
in the dimly lit windows above
were silently recording our racing pulse.

Tenements are on either side, their
fire escapes arthritic with rust
like towering, crook-back sentries:
they appear to want to arrest us.

Our sweaty party suits
heavy as white chains
S.O.S-ing our greetings
to anyone, anywhere
as we pass
between shadow and street lamp.
A traveling light show
of silver-sequined bodies
filled with
and bright bones,

we look for a "good time"

cursing the prophetic darkness
wishing we were home.

Thomas White has published his poetry widely in Australia, including in Imago (Queensland University Press) and Gangway, as well as read his work on Sydney and Canberra local radio. In North America, Tom White's poetry has been published in a Wisconsin poetry magazine The NeoVictorian/Cochlea, a Canadian journal The Eclectic Muse and Nuvein, a California poetry journal.



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