Kenneth Slessor

(27 March 1901 – 30 June 1971 / Orange, New South Wales)

Kenneth Slessor Poems

41. Stars 4/1/2010
42. Cock-Crow 4/1/2010
43. Burying Friends 4/1/2010
44. Chessmen 4/1/2010
45. An Inscription For Dog River 4/1/2010
46. Earth-Visitors 4/1/2010
47. The Knife 4/1/2010
48. City Nightfall 4/1/2010
49. Polarities 4/1/2010
50. The Night Ride 4/1/2010
51. Full Orchestra 4/1/2010
52. Five Visions Of Captain Cook 4/1/2010
53. A Bushranger 4/1/2010
54. Cannibal Street 4/1/2010
55. A Sunset 4/1/2010
56. Glubbdubdrib 4/1/2010
57. Fixed Ideas 4/1/2010
58. Heine In Paris 4/1/2010
59. Captain Dobbin 4/1/2010
60. City Nightfall 4/1/2010
61. Out Of Time 4/1/2010
62. Gulliver 4/1/2010
63. Crow Country 4/1/2010
64. Elegy In A Botanic Gardens 4/1/2010
65. Beach Burial 4/1/2010
66. Country Towns 4/1/2010
67. South Country 1/1/2004
68. Thief Of The Moon 1/1/2004
69. Mangroves 1/1/2004
70. North Country 1/1/2004
71. William Street 1/1/2004
72. Sleep 1/1/2004
73. Five Bells 1/1/2004
Best Poem of Kenneth Slessor

Five Bells

Time that is moved by little fidget wheels
Is not my time, the flood that does not flow.
Between the double and the single bell
Of a ship's hour, between a round of bells
From the dark warship riding there below,
I have lived many lives, and this one life
Of Joe, long dead, who lives between five bells.

Deep and dissolving verticals of light
Ferry the falls of moonshine down. Five bells
Coldly rung out in a machine's voice. Night and water
Pour to one rip of darkness, the Harbour floats
In the air, the Cross hangs upside-down in water. ...

Read the full of Five Bells

Mangroves

These black bush-waters, heavy with crusted boughs
Like plumes above dead captains, wake the mind....
Uncounted kissing, unremembered vows,
Nights long forgotten, moons too dark to find,
Or stars too cold...all quick things that have fled
Whilst these old bubbles uprise in older stone,
Return like pale dead faces of children dead,
Staring unfelt through doors for ever unknown.

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