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David Pecotić



the poet

 Born a poet nearly five decades ago, David Pecotić has had many adventures in the years between then and now: as seeker after truth, academic, partner, public servant, father and counsellor. Recently, tragedy reawoke in David a need to express himself in poetry. His poems have so far appeared in the Australian Poetry Collaboration and The Canberra Times. David lives in Australia, where he's in a complicated relationship with his daimon.

the poems

There are Days
You Cross Hunted

00:00 / 01:08

                                    There are days you cross hunted

                                    in rivers, shaded and breezed.

                                    Foot after sucked foot,

                                    this little can be a lot

                                    if it’s yours

                                    in the solid dark.

                                    Where you stand,

                                    others barely


                                    move slightly


                                    and you see to live

                                    is to live around yourself

                                    closer and finer

                                    and doesn’t take

                                    the eyes in a face.


                                    Where they narrow,

                                    they blow in.


                                    Where they long,

                                    they draw out.


                                    Such small round things


                                    through the net strings.

                                    Even at the last


                                    at the estuary’s edge.


00:00 / 02:00

                                    Out of time,

                                    I am become

                                    what I was:

                                    a fisherman

                                    off & on

                                    a black goddess


                                    where the fish

                                    that make dreams

                                    school their poison.

                                    Back on shore,

                                    I tell the bees

                                    the names

                                    of every gutted vision earned.

                                    A million glass wings

                                    beat sweetness in return.


                                    Further inland,

                                    I am the goat man,

                                    hoofed hard-on

                                    chasing every woody

                                    piece of arse,

                                    even my own.

                                    Up on the mountain,

                                    I’m his father,

                                    equally erect

                                    but frozen,

                                    the holy thief

                                    whose hungry mouth

                                    made the music.

                                    A dead ringer for shades

                                    who wings for tricks.


                                    Only in the forest dark

                                    can I reach down my throat

                                    to pull myself out,

                                    a vukodlach,


                                    turned inside-out,


                                    and ruddy.

                                    Village monster

                                    I kept down for so long,

                                    I had cut my hams,

                                    pricked my whole body

                                    with pins to prevent this:


                                    I cannot pretend

                                    after this operation

                                    I won’t walk about

                                    forcing your submission.

                                    Strigun—human by day,

                                    demon by night;

                                    held in check

                                    by my krsnik:

                                    the warlock gift with his hawthorn stick,

                                    that takes away,

                                    gives peace

                                    by piercing,

                                    the heart again.

Hoarfrost Future

00:00 / 01:02

                        Winter is always colder half-broken—

                        the frost bleeds out

                        as a sacrifice to what comes.

                        Today is as hard and cold,

                        sparkling a sharp wet razor.

                        So many melting facets,

                        so much hoarfrost future.

                        Glass candy hard

                        on a ground we can’t feel

                        getting warmer,

                        so subtle the seasoning.

                        I flow out the same, rhyming the solid ebb-tide—

                        wounded words and eyes

                        swallow unsatiated

                        spongey beds of loved leaves.

                        What does the sun-warmed wind

                        mean to their delicate rise and fall?

                        They tell me

                        to my autumn and spring

                        I don’t owe anything

                        at all.

Publishing credits

There are Days You Cross Hunted: Australian Poetry

  Collaboration (Issue 34)

Inheritance: Australian Poetry Collaboration (Issue 30)

Hoarfrost Future: The Canberra Times  (February 2021)

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