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In Australia || Matt Beard

In Australia
Part 1
The boomerang was on fire
So you threw it
There’s now a flaming boomerang
Approaching you
Much faster
Than you ever like a flaming boomerang
To approach you
You have just enough time left
To say the name of God
Backwards seven times
Dog Dog Dog Dog Dog Dog Dog
When you die
You feel like ice cream
Separated by a warm spoon
You sound
Just like
A dingo, you go
Part 2
In Australia
When you’re hungry
You eat
In Australia
When you’re thirsty
You drink, when you’re tired
You stay awake all night
Staring at the ceiling
Thinking of nectarines
Not an indigenous fruit
But one you can pick up
At most grocers
And markets and places
That sell that kind of thing
Part 3
On beach day
You pretend you’re not afraid
Of the sharks
Poisonous octopi, jellies
That might see you
For who you are
A born-naked human
Skin scrubbed pink
With a dislocated sponge
You cross your arms
Over your stomach, your chest
Pretend to smile
So the Internet will know
How happy you are
How very happy you are
On beach day
In Australia
You try not to cry
Part 4
Your grandfather’s accent
Like gargling honey
Goes away
When he sings in the shower
Or does his De Niro impression
At Christmas dinner
He’s all
Are you talking
To me?
His hands smell like soap
Is supposed to smell
In commercials
Cartoon bears and everything
You weep unashamedly
When word comes
That the blood built up
A hemorrhaged vessel
In his brain
Part 5
If you’re in Australia
When the world ends
Don’t panic
Just dance
Just take a handful
Of orange sand
In your mouth
Just walk
Waist deep into the ocean
Just say a prayer
To any god at all
Goodbye rocks
Goodbye sun
Goodbye dingo
Chewing off my leg
Under the blood orange moon
Part 6
I’m filled with blood
And only blood
But also mostly phlegm
And bile and orange desert sand
Pouring out of every hole I have
Beneath my fingertips
Instead of ear wax
When they break me open
The cause of death
Is them breaking me open
To determine the cause of death
I’ve got this globe
In a trunk in the attic
With an upside down map of Australia inside
Before it was a continent
It was the world
And every side
Was up
Part 7
You can never know
How someone really feels
Even in Australia
Whether they’re lying to you
Or to themselves
Whether they think love
Drips like juice
From a tangerine
Or it’s the hole that’s left
After the cannon ball
Shoots through you
You’ll wake up one morning
You’ll look over
And see him and think
I don’t know
I really don’t
Matt Beard is a writer and actor in Chicago. This month one of his plays is being produced in South Korea. He is too poor to attend. He’d love to hear from you whoever you are at mattwestonbeard@gmail.com