Poem: An Allegory for Our Times

15 November, 2021
Australian Bushfires – Abstractionism 131 cm x Width 198 cm Estelle Asmodelle 2019
“Australian Bushfires – Abstractionism,” 131 cm x 198 cm, 2019 (courtesy artist Estelle Asmodelle).


A poem by Jenny Pollak


—after Goya’s Disparate alegre (Merry folly)

We dance in the dark as the world slowly turns  
and our shadows fall dumb
as the candlestick burns.

Look how we move, we say, blind in our pleasure, 
and, don’t we look good
as we’re dancing together?

The land, it shrinks further, the sea rises higher,  
but, let’s raise a toast, we all cry,
To the weather!

The feet of the hanged man dance quicker, dance faster,
as we close our eyes  
and we toast to our pleasure.


For most of her life Jenny Pollak has been a full-time artist, focusing her arts practice in photography, sculpture and video installation, a time which also included five years as a musician playing flute and congas with various African and Latin American bands around Sydney, NSW, and on a short tour in Latin America. In 2012 she began a dedicated poetry practice and has since been published in various journals, including Meanjin, Cordite, the Australian Poetry Journal, and the Stilts journal, as well as in various anthologies, including Australian Award-Winning Writing 2017. She is currently working on her first two collections of poetry. 

Goyapoetryrising seaswildfires

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