Swan River Catfish
sunlight threw silk lanyards to the river bed,
slipping across scaleless convolutions of speckled catfish backs,
their knots immune to the sharp thrust of poisonous barbs.
we watched two Cobbler writhing in sandy shallows,
they danced in the shadows of a wastewater pipe,
arrogant whiskers stirring the basement floor,
he scrawled her graffiti notes of possession,
clouding the water with his monogamous declarations,
making a bed so that she might lay in it.
she is spawned to leave and he to stay,
a paternal progeny of survival,
if she stays, she will devour their children,
to sweeten her flesh,
I wonder at the sweetness of her flesh.
These are potted poems, thick and clear with imagery, full of volume. Ann mixes ‘churning weed and driftwood’, turns detail on ‘imperfect rhythm’, and knits broken bones. Seamless and sensual, the sounds and smells reverberate deep into the ears, hold the moment there. A distinctive collection of mind and memory. ‒ Rose van Son
I have always been impressed with Ann’s poetry. Her use of words and poetic form to create images and tell stories is one of the highlights of the open-mike at Perth Poetry Club. ‒ Elio Novello
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