July sunrise trapped in the granny flat
Window next door. The new home that
I opposed at the council because it actively
Sought to oversee our privacy.

As the day moves on it stays frozen.
Lights turn off, roller doors
Roll, dogs make the rounds, sniffing
At bed clothes, ring-marks licking.

O polarised binocular lens, O oil slick,
O cerement, why quietly break
Your ascent?
I would like to leave
This body and get smaller. Sleep

The diminishing sleep of suffering,
Slumbering surely in the Archaean

Decay souls remit among fossilised rocks
On Shark Bay. “Concentrate,”

Mr. Miyagi says, in Karate Kid One,
“Think only tree, Daniel San,”

During the mid-afternoon tv replay, I switch
Off halfway through …

About the Poem

This poem came out of personal concern for my neighbour. I don’t mean the actual ‘person next door’ neighbour but the value I place and at times fail to place on close relationships. Faithfulness in any relationship is hard work and complicated by all manner of external and internal challenges. This poem was a chance for me to consider loneliness and separation. This is a multilayered issue and one that is of primary importance for all given that we must maintain close relationships in order to live full and productive lives.

About the Author

Glenn McPherson is a Sydney-based poet and teacher. He has been widely published in Australian Journals and Anthologies. In 2022, he featured in the Newcastle Prize and ACU Poetry Prize Anthology, and was published in the Best of Australian Poetry 2022. In 2023, he was a finalist in the Gwen Harwood Poetry Competition, Poetry Forthcoming in, Antipodes and Australian Poetry Anthology (10).

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