Poetry Journal

Issues / Volume 5 Issue 2 , November 2015


Max after surfing

Dael Allison

On Olive Cotton’s photograph of Max Dupain

  summer curls from the page. 
  he is back, skin taut with salt, half-smoked 
  cigarette clenched in the vice of two fingers.
  blood still pounds to the muscular clutch 
  of waves. back, in the dim room where she
  sleeps. naked. humid. sheets rumpled with sex
  pushed back. he grasps the wooden bed end 
  half turns from her, back to the turmoil.
  light shafts from the window, a bright 
  weight upon her. it is nineteen thirty nine. 
  newly married, the horizon in his mind 
  glitters with change. one of them will leave.
  max in chiaroscuro, his thoughts in shadow. 
  waking, she thinks nothing is shuttered 
  from her. she reaches for her camera. 
  stay there, she whispers. stay like that.