Poetry from Abigail George

Ayanda Billie, nihilistic bees and the albatross keeper

 You’re fog. You’re a psychoanalyst. You’re a cell,
 a wilderness that knows to formulate the razor sharp
 reckoning of night feeding, swimming in the abyss of
 the lake with your tongue of grief and I look to your
 future and the steps you have taken with tokenism, with
 certainty. I find this stressful. I have taken to write
 in detail about the snakes that meditate in the sun. Let
 us wait, demonstrate a force for good. The day must
 need repair. You navigate the game world. I consult the
 gravitas of the day, the utility of humans, the function
 of wildflowers. What do you know of the arithmetic? Of Jung
 and the leaves of rubbish stumbling before you? Can
 you fix that muck? Poet, I want to make the world better,
 set you a task, reconfigure the aims of the world in
 front of me. The phoenix burns us. I don’t want to think
 of mindless conjecturing. All I see are problems worthy of
 investigation. I want choice. Poet, what is pain, the subject
 matter found in the atlas and the voiceless rabbit, the
 rusty nail at the bottom of a bucket, the concept of suffering
 branching out in seismic overdraft. The light has gone cold, chased
 out. Random driftwood is found at the end of the sea.
 I am waiting for the monster to eat me in the darkness.
 The birds shriek in the backyard in need of the moonlight
 that tours around the world. The shroud is inspired
 where it meets the horizon. The sun bends in its despair
 and I put it back together. Its strange continuity. Its
 neurology is not working right. We must kill it. The rough
 spark. Do you know what the appropriate response is?
 To meet the braver hypothetical. Look at the miserable
 sharks. See how they ably count sheep in this hard life.
 I admire the albatross keeper. I take the windswept eagle
 sham, my common humanity, Adler’s school of thought,
 the potential for power, the positioning of the elk’s turning
 point, the function of nihilism lecturing to the milk-fed
 vision of the universe within me. Tell the truth in your ignorance,
 the poet tells me from his university extracting laws, order
 from energetic chaos. I am religious. I obtain functionality from
 nature’s plant sap, unfurling the tragedy from the finite road
 that knows its determining limits. I don’t know if you
 have nerves, the capacity for bliss or joy, the character
 that makes up the abstract me is something that is undefined.
 To care for egoic self. Achebe, Soyinka are champions.
 We push ourselves out against the world informed by the
 unknown code in genes. I search for footprints in the river.

 Mzi Mahola, spiritual warriors and poetic choice

 I am alone. I stand alone. I achieved it. I am excellent.
 But poets, what do you believe in? There are days when
 I am not myself. When I speak terrible Czech. Mouthing,
 ‘I need you’. The trajectory shifts. I find arrows in
 my right hand. My sister is not here. I testify my heart out
 but nothing clicks. I adjust the turning point of my behaviour
 accordingly. The day is bitter. I wish to gather branch
 to me, to find ample loyalty in Christian fellowship and
 do you still have faith, poet? You see teeth, I am not
 young anymore. People have left me. I am undone. Radical
 achievement is a mountain, but I am standing in the
 strategy of the valley not caring about my pain. Milan
 Kundera is bemused; I am the outsider frightened of
 my future. I need help. Feel around. Find the words.
 but the poets here are social animals. Spiritual warriors
 with a key in their left hand that will unlock creativity.
 The party has left. I am a dying poet, but you are alive.
 You are the exit out of this planet. I have been betrayed
 by non-meaning. The goal tangles. Look for the specific
 yonder. Life is an imperfect funk sprawled across the
 landscape of wilful ingenuity calculating potential. Thrive!
 But only if you dare to find the truth. Cowardly deceit is
 staring at me, communicating its progress but the apt
 rubbish, its captain, the morality of the community’s aims,
 responsible sharks in a flock of suits can be found there.
 There is a coral bead in my mouth, grief in my head, tragic
 basics that keep me up at night, but I keep walking
 ahead of time, mall rats, crowds of people carrying birds.
 You are not me. I don’t write as you do. I am critic.
 You are wise. I am undergraduate and apprentice. You are
 masterful. I am green shoot, Canadian prairie, rural and
 jungle, Alberta, the mighty river fixed up with stars. My light
 is growing dim and I no longer have the capacity to speak
 happy. I want nothing to do with gravity. I can’t get a
 firm grip of it. Into the river. Into the narrative glut. I am
 fish. You are genius. Nihilism corrupts me. I know of
 malevolence, brutal natures, and the clouds are ignorant
 of bliss. Look at where I am standing solitude. I am a
 school of bright volunteers making headway. I know what
 torments female poets. We want meaning, calling. Poet you
 feel the joy, you pursue deeds, tidings manifest beneath
 your pen while I cut away sustenance with unformed
 loneliness. It doesn’t matter what I believe, there’s choice.
 I am severely depressed, in pain but understand the aim
 of life, making stupid plans, implementing fixed success.
 There’s a poetic choice in ceremonial life, in modal suffering.