Photo by Chiara Melone

Jennifer Compton lives in Australia and is a poet and playwright. Her most recent book of poetry is PARKER & QUINK published by Ginninderra Press. In 2004 she was a guest at the International Festival of Poetry in Genoa.

..."Warburton Franki is the brand name on our electricity meter board out on the verandah."

Monday's Poem

© Jennifer Compton

Storm! Power Cut!

Used up all the battery in my laptop.
Bugger! As the guys who only work
16 hours straight—pack of wimps!
struggle with the downed lines
on Murrimba Road by the school.
The wind is tousling their hair, what!

Goodbye! I scream, via keyboard,
(hyperbole!) to my mate in Denver, CO.
Tell the others, will you? Goodbye!
You should change your battery
or switch to outlet power immediately
to keep from losing your work.

The house judders as the dark ages,
— by candlelight and hurricane lamp —
get a grip, squeeze my electric life shut.
Out on the verandah Warburton Franki
is not! counting out my kilowatt hours
with a rustling chock — chock — chock.

Now, I can think of anything, but I think
of the hermit sheep, with 3 years growth
of wool, flushed out of the faraway gorse
by working dogs. I stood watch on the knoll
of the long ago, more than somewhat, idyllic
hill. He feinted and butted — but the dogs

had got him. What was the lesson I took
from the hermit sheep? Nothing. Zilch.
I was playing chasey with the son and heir
round and round their shearing shed.
Christ! I smacked my head a beauty
on the flying buttress of the gutter pipe.