Many hands

The day before the fridge broke down
I wished it would
shut up

As I listened, trying to breathe,
the noise separated
I could hear the electrons
shocking about in the wires
the liquefied gas gurgling thinly
in the pipes
a ringing like a legion of teeny steel hammers
beating and beating on teeny steel tubes

It sounded like a mill of miniature machines
worked by miniature sweating slaves
The heat exchanger was crammed
with tiny miserable elves
They couldn’t get at the food
they worked all day to cool
I heard stomachs roaring,
lungs gargling, feet shuffling

Many mouths were whispering
Many hands began to twist
and pull



Jackson’s four full-length poetry collections include A coat of ashes (Recent Work Press 2019) and The emptied bridge (Mulla Mulla Press 2019). The Fremantle Press Anthology of Western Australian Poetry includes her work.