Winged and killing after Catullus

Some birds are hard to love
the blue heron
wodjaloks with crimson wattles
growling from my balcony

like dogs

I’ve seen one machete the soft neck
of a female in spring
then poke flimsy throats
of virgin grevillea
in a rhapsody of blood and foreplay

The driven
drop nerve agents on children
hurl acid in a woman’s face

on a Sydney Street

and that three year-old washed up

on the beach

his tucked-in shirt lifted
ever so gently by the ripple of an incoming tide
so he looked for a moment

full of breath

utterly alive

Julie Maclean


Julie Maclean has published four chapbooks and one collection. Her poetry, fiction, reviews and short fiction have appeared in The Age, Cordite, Island, Overland, Poetry (Chicago), Southerly and international journals.

© 2018