Poetry of Ann Davis


There was a time
I wore sorrow like sackcloth                       
proclaimed the colour of my day
in dress of dun pale face of woe
accepted pity as my due
wallowed in my grief
but sunshine has a way
of creeping in
to light dark places
like the bursts of colour
on the Sistine ceiling
and cliched silver linings
insinuate themselves
in context
and in line
with each dilemma
dispelling misery
shading black to grey
brushing a first tinge of pink
on pallid skin
changing the mufti
of my closet
day by day
until I emerged at last
in Joseph's coat.

Published in Outside Looking In.



In my kitchen
so much depends upon
the musings of my mind

if I am filled with thoughts
of crushed garlic, roasting meat
if I find myself smiling
while adding spices to the soup
if whipping cream
becomes an art form
then I'll provide
a meal beyond description
to any gourmet magazine

if instead my muse controls my mind
I'll happily sit down to vegetables
still raw enough to masquerade as salad
potatoes with their bottoms
burnt in tie-dyed rings
and meat that falls apart
at the first hint of a knife
that food
becomes peripheral
to my craft.

for a poem about wind
or rain or love
my 'wide brown land'
or burnt potatoes
is more filling
and fulfilling
than a feast.

Published in XXI World Congress of Poets Anthology, The Opening of
Borders, 2001.
It has also been translated into Polish to appear in a Polish/Australian
Anthology and will possibly be translated into Italian for an Anthology published by Giovanni Campisi an ItalianDoctor at Trente University.



We met for the first time
outside the church.
I, dry-eyed at last,
composed and dressed in black.
He, shining with health
looking so young and clean.
Hair slicked, tie straight,
hurt brown eyes, moist
above a bouquet of long stemmed red roses.
And her words rushed in on me,
threatening to overcome my false bravado.
"Mum, I love him,
I can't wait for you to meet him."
And so we met outside the church
while she waited within.
"The roses are beautiful," I offered,
and he replied, "There's one for every year
and one to grow on."
And then we said "Hello."
and we held each other.
Later, he said goodbye,
in a moving eulogy that spoke of everlasting love,
of diamonds and hearts and flowers
and finally he was done.
I cried for all the might-have-beens,
for dark-eyed grandchildren I would never see.
And the congregation cried with me
to the music he had chosen.

And she will always be Forever Young.

Published  in The Naked Pomegranate (Oz lit mag - now defunct) 1994.


After the fact

A cold blooded officer
just wants the facts
while the rape of the body
is repeated once more
a nightmare
by men in white coats
with knives that make notes
the dreaming comes later
her possessions laid out
some are given away

some just have to stay
to be looked at again
on some long winter's day
to help combat the pain

and a blossom that fell
from a tree in the spring
not forgotten
but banished
to memory's lane
is pressed in a book
full of black
and white faces
and echoes of voices
and cards with large crosses
and lilies and churches

leaves that have turned
with the passing of years
dry eyes that have yearned
for the comfort of tears

statistics compiled
histories complete
all unimportant
after the fact.

Published as above


Entertaining Death

When death visited
I made pots of tea
to compliment the buckets of tears
smiled invitingly
over the cake plate
and the funeral announcement
welcomed official intruders
along with the mourners
and painted my face
to hide the ravages of grief

when death departed
I was lonely and frightened
aware of the grave dark hole
of my existence
drank neverending cups of coffee
to welcome each unfriendly dawn
painted pink and deceptively rosy
by a user-unfriendly
non-government painter

time put the lie to fallacies of healing
pain burns like each cigarette
dragged to the thin gold band
which gives a warning point
beyond which I should not go
superfluous to read the written word

living is a health hazard

Published in Somerset Poets Anthology, Outside Looking In, 2000



It's not only in fairy tales
that crisp flesh and
spicy juices
mask the poison

witches and wicked step-mothers

there's said to be
a rotten apple in every barrel

any maiden
cohabitating with seven men

regardless of size

is apt to end up
a little less than
snow white.

Published in S O U T H E R L Y (Oz lit. quarterly) 1999


Australian writer Ann Davis loves words and playing with language. Hooked
on poetry she believes in actively supporting her craft and is a member of the Poets Union Inc. Somerset Poets and The New South Wales Writers' Centre - where she served as Deputy Chair on the Management Committee 1997-2000 - and Deputy Chair of the recent XXI World Congress of Poets, Sydney - 2001. Ann has convened a workshopping group, the Women
Writers' Network (which meets weekly) since October 1993.

As mother of a gaggle of daughters she is never short of material
for poetry, short stories or articles. She was recently included
in the Penguin Anthology 'Turning Points'.

Music: Last Days
Art:  Portion of 'Hope' by Burnes

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