Poetry We Love — Call And Response

Posted on December 06 2018

Poetry We Love is BooksActually's newest blog series featuring excerpts of poetry from our favourite collections. In this edition, we look at the newly-released Math Paper Press publication, 'Call And Response: A Migrant/Local Anthology'. This anthology gathers the voices of more than thirty 'migrant' poets, and pairs them with a creative response from the same number of 'local' writers in this initiative.
So here is a call.
"as your silhouette approaches the lamp post
a maze appears and runs through my skin
in this place of dim lights, trade and celebration
where feet never come to sleep and die
we have five thousand four hundred breaths to spend
my core trembles as I preserve my calm expression
while you navigate our way to the next bend
our words muddle in dust and snoring cars
we fell into sighs and silence
my ribcage was melting
I was thinking of that line you drew in the air
so, I build a brick wall between our shoulders
deriving a flux of divergence, dragging us back
from throwing ourselves at each other"
— FORCE FIELD by Naive L. Gascon
And here, a response.
"47th floor. Beneath us, trees are tessellating into space,
greenhouses, two metal molluscs moored
from orbit. Your mouth at my neck. The city sipping
at stars. I last loved a girl at 23, and it scared me
to know my whole universe slept soundly
in a single room. I think of the men who consumed me
with the wide-mouthed hunger of galaxies, rattling me
through layers of unfamiliar gravity in a shallow box.
A warning: I am a number divisible by inly one and
itself. Did you know cicadas emerge from underground
cocoons every 3,13 or 17 years – their erratic breeding
cycles evolved to catch predators by surprise? We will
never find synchrony in flight. But look, there is tonight,
and both of us spiralling cleanly in our own axes,
at the peak before the precipice of decline. Later,
I will feel the weight of you pinning me down,
like young moons. I am 29 and too old to wax and
wane in regret. We wake to switchblades of sunlight
serrating the floor. I spin to you with bare feet."
— PRIME by Amanda Chong
Call And Response is now available on our webstore.


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