Tag Archives: mr oCean

Winter Ginko: City Botanic Gardens

The sun was blazingly beautiful again today, and my head was still swimming with haiku thanks to yesterday’s ginko. I am excited to post these poems from four of the poets who joined me on the day, and later in the week, I will post poems from the three remaining poets. It’s always a thrill to see so many fine poems written into being…


masts swing –
hundreds of joggers
up the tempo


muddy hull takes the river to the sea

mr oCean

Web Bird

[photograph by Andy Smerdon]

sunday shadows
a soldier bird
breaks bread


through the fence
a chinese boy tries speaking duck

Andrew Phillips

 Wb Haiku

[photograph by Andy Smerdon]

august wind
tight strings resonate
a winter song


blue feathers and orange beak
a subtle enquiry

Andy Smerdon


[photograph by Andy Smerdon]

light and shade on the duck pond       passing


partitioned park seats
for the homeless
no sleep

Trish Reid


Filed under poetry & publishing

Review of home{sic} by Julie Beveridge

The good folk over at Off Street Press have just published a glowing review of Julie Beveridge’s recent collection, home{sic}, by Brisbane-based poet, mr oCean.

Here’s a snippet from the review:

Thinking about how to describe Beveridge’s work had me thinking about Being John Malkovich; I have yet to find a poet who better manages to place you in a moment behind someone else’s eyes (however unfamiliar that moment might be).

Got your attention? Now, click on over to read the full review.

And remember, you can pick up a copy of home{sic} at the Another Lost Shark Online Store.

1 Comment

Filed under poetry & publishing

Guided by Poets: Zenobia Frost

The Guided by Poets idea has been a blast! For this thread, I tapped Miss Ruby Fizz, Zenobia Frost on the shoulder and asked her to hoist the sails and captain this Guided by Poets voyage. And this thread has traveled some distance… Brisbane – Berlin – Cambridge – Chicago shining a light on some mighty fine poets along the way! And here they are: Zenobia Frost – mr oCean – Michael Haeflinger – Jose Olivarez – Nate Marshall.


Bathing with Gaiman

Before reading in the bath,
I ease the book’s
jacket off. I

the steaming water with one toe
and shuffle off my own dust cover
to step
and slide
in and under,

holding the book above my head
like an umbrella. Then, spread
with my arms leaning on my legs,
I read, turning the pages

with the tip
of my tongue.

Later, while I scrub
or shave my legs
with my right hand,

I realise I’ve gone
cover to cover (or nearly).

The fingers of my left arm sulk
and strain, and I must
balance the book on my head
to flex the lameness out (and again

till feeling returns).
Then I swap hands and finish
my story and scrubbing,

to step out clean and complete,
steeped in someone else’s
glistening words.



Zenobia Frost is a poetic adventurer, hat fetishist and protector of apostrophes whose debut collection, The Voyage, will be launched by SweetWater Press on the 3rd of May. In her writing, Zenobia aims to highlight those common enchantments that are often overlooked. Thus, The Voyage is a whimsical journey on (generally) calm seas with a crew of curious creatures and a compass that points to whichever shore offers the best cup of tea. Zenobia’s poems have found homes in such Australian journals as Going Down Swinging, Small Packages, Stylus, Mascara and Voiceworks, and she has recently performed at the Queensland Poetry Festival, Contraverse and Under a Daylight Moon. She also coordinates The Ruby Fizz Society for Superior People, a light-hearted excuse for performance arts and baked goods. The Voyage, illustrated by talented local artist Bettina Walsh, launches at 7pm on the 3rd of May in the !Metro Arts Basement.



It is an act of impossible will,
to hold my body together,
when every nerve insists
that all I am is energy
and that we belong to the sky,
with the lightning and auroras.

All that holds me down,
all that keeps me from atomising,
is the focus of the flow of ink
and the flow of red wine
past my madly grinning lips.

I am the helium balloon
on a windy day,
colouring the chilly clouds
and whispering dreams of flight
to the child who holds me



mr oCean is an unfinished work of fiction, commenced in Brisbane, Australia, and continuing in Berlin, Germany.  He has featured at La Mina di Velluto, The Kurilpa Poets, SpeedPoets (Brisbane) and Fluxus Capacitor (London).  Making only occasional forays into reality, he writes predominantly sketches of views from windows or mirrors.



Love Poem for the Everyday

I love you mixed with lemon juice and basil.  I love you on fire
in the sink.  I love you made of plastic or small triangular pellets
or standing on a coast somewhere staring off in the distance
singing a Top 40 hit.

I love you with your hair pulled back and your eyes
facing upwards like that painting of dogs playing
poker.  I love you when you change your name to Lucy
and shoot paper wads from straws.

I love you when you don’t do that, too.

I love you like I used to love you, before I stopped
loving you, because we tend to drift apart, but we tend
to drift back together again, too.  I love you in the heat
of the pennant drive, coated in mustard, wafting your divinity

across right field.  I love you brewed into my brain,
electric, set apart.  I love you left behind as an artifact
and already talk about you as though you are dead.
I love both sides of your brain, weigh them separately

then weigh them together and then check the math.
I love the smooth rich columns of your promenade
and I love the chipped sidewalks of your memories.
I love the sound of your key in the lock, your made-up

words and own two feet.  I love scanning the ends
of movie credits for your name.  I love your name
and I say it every morning when the blooming pussy
willows yawn through the open window.

Berlin, March 2009



Michael Haeflinger is a poet, educator, and organizer from Dayton, OH.  His work has recently appeared in BlazeVOX, Newleaf, tall-lighthouse anthology, Make, milk, Nexus, and SoMA.  He has taught workshops in the US, Germany, and Netherlands.  He currently lives in Berlin, Germany.



April 10, 2009

How I learned to talk to girls

Sitting on the couch
with a girl I could only dream about
in dreams,

I tried looking her in the eyes,
but mine were birds in the winter
darting south.

She told me she liked
poetry, so I smiled sunshine

Talked poems and poets:
pantoums to get in your pantoons

but she crossed her
legs building borders between us.
“No, no”

said, “when I told you
I liked poetry I meant that I liked you—
Now come over here and please

stop talking.”



Jose Olivarez is a junior at Harvard College.  His work has been published in Konch Magazine, the Harvard Voice, The November 3rd club, and this spring will be published in The Gamut and Tuesday Magazine.  He is also an occasional blogger at http://quetothepasa.wordpress.com/



the genesis

rappers i monkey flip em
with the funky rhythm
I be kickin

age 13 in evergreen plaza
cold chillin in a b(irthday)-boy
stance i was stone still
standing in front of the
cd shop with my homie
jess was from oshkosh wisconsin
didn’t know nasir from nelly
thought wu-tang
was a fruit punch
but he bought me my first copy
of illmatic
popped into my discman the
crimson Columbia© disc
and started spending the jacksons
asking myself

what the fuck
is this bullshit
on the radio



Nate Marshall is from the South Side of Chicago. This is by far the most important thing about him. He is a poet/MC/writer who has been previously anthologized in The Spoken Word Revolution: Redux. He is a first-year student at Vanderbilt planning to major in English and African American Studies. He competed in Brave New Voices International Teen Poetry Slam and was a part of a Chicago team that took 3rd in the competition. He has performed his work at many universities and notable venues across the country. He has also released two independent hip-hop albums with the group Daily Lyrical Product. In short, he has a higher ACT score than your favorite rapper, can beat your favorite dead white poet in a rap battle, and can outscore your high school valedictorian in a poetry slam. Word.


Filed under Guided By Poets

Random Questions – Why doesn’t Thursday talk itself into coming after Friday? (Pablo Neruda)

Poetry raises so many questions that poke and probe at the mind. This Lost Shark has been trawling through some of his favourite poems and decided to take some of these questions and throw them out to the big wide world to see how people would respond.

The first question he sent out to the universe is one of many posed by Pablo Neruda in his classic collection, Book of Questions:

Why doesn’t Thursday talk itself into coming after Friday?

 Here’s what people have sent in so far:


Thursday has the joy of anticipating Friday – and anticipation is always the best part of the journey.

Jan Turner-Jones

but of course it does!  i’ve never known a thursday that didn’t come after a friday.  some days after, sure…

Bruce Dorlova

Because it is better to anticipate than to arrive.

Philip Neilsen

In the deepening twilight of the order of things, Thursday waits, with sheathed blade and bloody imaginings.

G.I. Lewis

Why doesn’t Thursday talk itself into coming after Friday? (Pablo Neruda)

Because as many times as Thursday
tries on Saturday’s football socks for size,
swishes about in Saturday’s hat (just right for picnics),
Thursday is destined to be a bridesmaid
– a lady in waiting.
Never to be Friday,
the celebrated last day of the working week.
Never to stagger bleary eyed into the scratchy Saturday light.
Thursday is always
to be relegated to late night shopping in suburbia
and a few quick ones after work
–it can’t be a big one, there’s always work tomorrow.
Thursday can see Saturday from where it is,
but it lacks confidence,
it drowns in it’s own mediocrity.
Thursday scuffs its feet with its hands in its pockets,
it can see Saturday but it can never be Saturday
no matter how much talking it does.

Trudie Murrell

Because Thursday holds the promise of Friday.

Sally Browne

Because Friday is too commercialised, and sells so much stuff to us for the weekend, to ever allow itself to be reduced to a Thursday, because if this happened Friday believes Capitalism would not survive.

Paul Wildman

It is the beacon still blinking
on the horizon, knowing this
is not our only hope.
It is the wind in our sails that assures us
we’re still moving.
It is the dream, so much stronger
than the touch.

mr oCean

Surely because Thursday is pay day for pensioners?

Jason Darling

I love Neruda’s Book of questions. I find echoes of them in Cornelia Parker’s installations http://www.artseensoho.com/Art/DEITCH/parker98/parker1.html – Uncurling an unseen world. There is something sublime in melting the solids of concepts like days of the week in your imagination. I can’t remember who asked this first, but I love the question ‘Why do we remember our past but not our future?’ Questioning destabilises. In schools we are taught to answer questions not ask them. To ask these sorts of questions asks us to look at where symbols end and a non-human reality begins. We create systems with which to make meaning then forget they are our creations. Who decided to name the days of the week? Baudrillard said ‘illusion is the most egalitarian, most democratic principle there is, everyone is equal before illusion, whereas we are not equal in front of the world as ‘truth’ and ‘reality.’ Neruda’s questions mediate a way to this space, effect a partial recovery of what is ‘lost’ allowing the world it’s illusions back. So much we search to make meaning from is a non-physicality. Neruda poses questions as a gift back to our imaginations, juicy to think that the unpresentable can only really come forward as missing contents. Now that’s poetry ha!

Amanda Joy

It goes back to the Norse gods and the creation myths. To times when the world as we know it was being born, a time when the foundations of society were forming and truths of the psyche were becoming part of humanities archetypal psychological makeup that have since reached into the present with only superficial changes to the fundamental differences between the men and women who have sired the generations, the previous that bring our forefathers and nay our mothers too into the present day, bring us to an age old point of contention that began with Thor and Freya, the original namesakes of our modern day Thursday and Friday.

Thor: (breathless) I’m trying and trying not to…..

Freya: Oh please just talk yourself out of it, think of me as the witch living at the other end of Valhalla…

Thor: Oh no, it’s too late…

Freya: (Sigh)… Thor dammit, no matter how much you try and talk yourself out of it, it seems this woman will always come last.

Bremen Town Musician


I don’t know about Thursday but talking of ol Pablo put me in mind of that Simpsons episode where Bart sells his soul and then finds he can no longer laugh at Itchy & Scratchy..
Bart; “I know its funny so why aren’t I laughing..”
Lisa; “well, Pablo Neruda says that laughter is language of the soul”
Bart (with quiet dignity) “I am aware of the works of Pablo neruda.”
quote from Encyclopedia Simpsonica
The Reverend Hellfire

So what is your response to this question? Be sure to post it in the comments.


Filed under Random Questions