Nicholas Manning

from Novaless . . .


in the evening after
her body * such breath came
like a surprised self-movement
(of the wind) . . . in weight or burden
in intrinsic * properties of matter
forms arbitrarily designated
negative and or positive
in a measure
of these properties
the melodies * were repeating
stunning tones interlocking twining
caressing existential shades
in the higher darker
-ing the still trees
moving all eclectic phenomena
fixed * as if sweetly married
by the mere tones’
as out the oldest
stone in such emotional * timbres
the greatest happiness of colours
ever possessed by any body
or contained * (florally)
in some quivering
of the air


the colours
as in my firmament
spread by the sky * lightly . . . in
light : such coldest passions
this long * winter born
the most searing
the skies a rising future
oracity : sheer * opacities
of calico in blue . . .
« I need you *
here now
beloved » silver roses
risen * in the rising tune’s lack
in the darkest of all blooms
long silver lake-bridges
tension’s spectral
shaping the floating
face : « what are you without
me * mirror ? » . . . in the stillest
moments : black flowers
of myself ?


gold wound in jade
the elephant * ’s trunk encrusted
the breasts’ arching a cave
of thatched hurdles and boughs
between the animate and
the in-
choate there is
this space * of breath :
these branches in white gold
wrought : universal
coiling dead life’s curl
-ing hairs to make
love * or in its
element . . .
some * sacrament
by the reflection of your face
or in the bronzish hoary boards
defeating now defaming
touchable knowable
the golden *
moving nova (a much better
instrument) for * the beginning
of all time


refraction *
in this mirror’s blue
light * transparency opacity’s
calm reworked . . . reflect
silver tri-
angular * inflections
the wan ray * ’s deflections
from this one « true »
point . . . a story
with which
its implements (silver)
are instruments * of a sky :
these black high trees swaying
taking the indigo’s penumbra
its forms of life in my
morning mirror
down the ivory brush
turning to the outside * world
the two small blue hands
clutching * close : « I
shall be asleep most
when you return . . . »


in seeking my interview
for concourse with these shadows where
my flower out * this darkness
in * its concurrent waters
blooms . . .
eternal and new . . .
with that curious mechanical
regularity ! the spark * of my eyes
this rupture * of pure reason * that in
the face of hopelessness the battle
between the snow and thaw
in an illogical * universe !
it occupies the other
all the leaves
seeming « far-off » yet
consoling us * mocking us
the twilight a literal light-veil
the coming evening encroaching
our loneliness on our limit’s
life but strangely still in
the midst * of this dia
-logue : happiness
as moss upon
the damp


or divinely draped . . . *
where by the light of the shaded
such an elegant figure
in most admirable « modern » foil
in the peculiarly rich brown
those hair-plaits such
seeming ludicrous !
gaping now * at these ruins
the whole of graeco-roman culture
this scene of domestic * anachronism
imagining the dark * gap caused
the damage * in other respects
the phaeton half-overturned
the trembling soul-flower
a slight scrape
then a spiraling scream . . . « drive home !
drive home ! » stepping back into the darkness
it appeared he had been * deceived then
by this removal of the house
the reins giving way
to the world
half-leaning half-lighting
where the garden once had * been
so many years * a crippled slant
cast his bullets at the elm tree
swaying crunched scores in
its dead patch of ground :
« I find I am hurt more
seriously * than
I thought »

Nicholas Manning is Australian by birth. He took his B.A. in Comparative Literature and French at the University of Queensland, Australia. and is currently an Assistant Lecturer in Comparative Literature at the University of Strasbourg, France.

His poems and articles have appeared in Verse, The Argotist, Free Verse, Dusie, BlazeVox, Fascicle, MiPoesias, Eratio, CrossXConnect, Stylus, Aught, Shampoo, Snow Monkey, Imago amongst other places.

He is also a reviewer for Verse and Cordite, was nominated this year for a Pushcart Prize and maintains a weblog at thenewermetaphysicals.blogspot.com.

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