shot glass
"... brevity is the soul of wit ..."
- William Shakespeare


BN Oakman's poetry is widely published in Australia (including in Best Australian Poems 2014 and 2015) and internationally. Recent collections include In Defence of Hawaiian Shirts (IP 2010) and Second Thoughts (IP 2014). In 2016 the actor John Flaus recorded 25 of his poems on a CD titled What did I know?. Once upon a time Oakman was an academic economist.

BN Oakman

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Yet Why Not Say?

After Robert Lowell's Epilogue

I want to say what happened,
commit memories, imaginings,
dreams, to words, and honour Lowell's
evocation of Vermeer's blue girl,
face burning with yearning, grasping
that precious letter, turning
towards the sun's stealing light.

I turn words to the light, watch
it shimmer across them, enhancing
brightness, shadow, the smooth,
the ragged, thoughts intended or
unintended despite my wilful desires,
then, in whatever I find I scavenge
to maybe uncover a poem.