B. R. Dionysius

(1969 - / Queensland / Australia)

Beeble Gas

Beeble Gas

For Louie


It is a dirty old story

Of a boom & bust cycle

Beyond the scale of anything.

Earth, an over-oxygenated fish

Tank burst with nutrient growth.

The original hothouse skyscrapers;

Carboniferous gods that thrust

Themselves like a giant’s beanstalk

Up through the world’s wet roof.

Giant ferns unwound like contrary

Clock springs, the cogs of their spores

Spun over the forest’s damp floor

As green fibrous assassins choked

The life out of titans, millennial wise.


Time, the eternal miner

Chipped patiently away

At the world forest’s rich

Vein. Spent eons loading

New atoms into the trunks

Of lifeless trees as though

Presents were being stuffed

Into a Christmas stocking.

It was a Frankenstein morph

In reverse, a transformation

Of the living into the dead.

There was a smell of methane

As the Earth’s fist squeezed

& the black putrefaction began.


It was searched for

Like a cardiac surgeon

Sniffing out a heartbeat.

At first ungainly, where

The flicker of a pulse

Registered at the surface

Of the Earth’s thick skin

Like an Adam’s apple’s bob.

It was witnessed protruding

Through creek banks like a weft

Of femur erupting from a shattered

Leg. Then, the vivisection began.

Black marrow sucked out of the bone

Like breath out of a lung.


Then the desire was to go deeper,

As if pumping one body full of chemicals

Would cure the disease that appeared

In everyone else. So they went at it; a gold

Rush hysteria as needles pin-cushioned

The earth’s dark suit. A voodoo curse

Bringing pain to the body’s deep flesh.

They brushed aside relatives who moped

Around the old fence line & dug for their

Lives as though they were children, mining

Crab tunnels with a wild irreverent glee.

Never minding where the vortex of sand

Flew, which locals were upset or whose eyes

Watered, as grains bit into a delicate few.


It is like cutting the fin

Off a blue shark’s body

& throwing the bleeding

Trunk back into the water;

To die by sluggish drowning.

A useless thing choking on its

Own being. It is trawling by

Impossible numbers or cutting

Off an iceberg’s tip, to harvest

Slush for a short-lived cocktail

Party. A drunken yield for refined

Tastes, that loses sight of the ocean.

It is clearing an entire forest in order

To build a temporary airstrip.


It is the mistaken language of a child

An innocent’s trick, mouthing ‘beeble’

For bird; the meaning crystal clear

As a water table left untapped, but

Its annunciation polluted when the time

Comes to extract. This is a body without

The need to resuscitate, a set of lungs

Without the desire to inflate.

It is the breaking of a hundred million

Year old pact, the thieving of a fairytale

Giant’s coal sack. A boom & bust cycle

Beyond the scale of anything.

It is cutting off a dirty old story before

The narrator reaches the punch line.

Submitted: Monday, May 28, 2012

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