Nicholas Antoniak, is an 18 year old emerging Australian writer. He writes both creative fiction, creative non-fiction and poetry. He has been included in the 2015 Lane Cove short story anthology and will be published in the 2016 Questions Literary prize later this year. In July he will commence a bachelor of arts majoring in philosophy and sociology and hopes one day to become an author/poet/philosopher.
A Backwards-facing Tile.
You never really did get me, did you dad?
I was that backwards-facing tile on the bathroom floor and you had OCD.
I was the kid in grade school who had that odd shaped birthmark,
and you were the one to point it out.
Because for you being different was analogous to being wrong.
Like an oversized pair of suit pants,
or a jumper that had shrunk in the wash.
But I never asked for you to like it.
I knew you couldn’t embrace it.
I just wanted you to accept, and move on.
Yet you became America and I was Vietnam.
You thought you were fighting against evil,
but all you did was leave me in ruins and fuck me right up.
And I get it; no, I really do.
You came from a era with well kept kitchens where everything had their place.
Of course you would get mad if someone came in and messed up the spices.
But this is not a kitchen,
and I am not a spice.
I am your son, and you were my dad.
A golden prison.
A golden prison.
Seething with black tar and bubbling gravel
laid down by
a thousand twitching faces just waiting to rest.
Some were crying.
Where now, they asked, were the reverent values
of deafening solitude,
harmony, silence and bliss?
Where now, were the trees,
whispering secrets unattainable to us,
yet lined in the sand?
Where now, will we find what we lost
through false friends, waking fear,
and the pleasure,
lying wild in the dark?
I’d rather see
a reflection of beauty
in my half lit cave
than the reality of this golden prison we have built.
creeping into buildings,
Like a flower,
in the wind.
I lie unencumbered,
by the shallow glee
that follows me, (occasionally),
in the air.
And I sit,
as children sit,
waiting and wondering
on the ways of the world.
But the world speaks nought.
A white silky moon
runs freely through my veins.
Like a crooked dancer on ice.
Don't talk down to me
I beg of you,
for I am one not too fond of the dust.
And I wish I could hear
the sounds of strings
echo from a lonely field.
in their tender rigid arms.
In that field
I would dream of moonless nights
as the soft serenade of emptiness
lulled me to sleep.
This is not a love poem.
Watching as in the corner of the bar
you share tainted love with some piss-drunk guy
without even giving me a second glance.
I burn without running.
In your playful black skirt
that frolics gracefully
around fragile knees, you dance.
I burn without thinking.
You tease me sporadically,
bouncing back and forward
like some sick game of pong.
I burn without feeling.
I wish we could rest,
side by side in Budapest, Rome or Berlin
and do whatever.
But not you, my dear,
my partner self pity.
I burn myself.
And although it hurts
as I watch across the room,
I realise something.
I enjoy burning,
and I enjoy the flames.