Extracts From a Liar’s Notebook (David Adès)

If you tell the lie, tell it slant
but with a direct gaze, with utter conviction,
tell it as if you believe it is truth,

again and again – and in the telling
watch it transform, watch it become truth,
become certainty, immutable,

as if it were never other,
and in this way fool most of the world,
save those nearest ones who taste the lie,

who feel it in their guts, who tremble,
wounded, diminished, whose love
wavers, becomes muddied, conflicted;

and then tell yourself another lie
in the same way, justifying the first if it
is not yet truth, if any doubt lingers,

so you become blind to the damage
you have wrought, the damage you will repeat,
the devastation all around you.

David Adès moved to Pittsburgh in April 2011 from Adelaide, Australia. He is a poet and short story writer. He won the Wirra Wirra Vineyards Short Story Prize (2005) and his poetry collection Mapping the World was commended for the Fellowship of Australian Writers Anne Elder Award 2008. David has been a member of Friendly Street Poets since 1979. He is a former Convenor of Friendly Street Poets and co-edited the Friendly Street Poetry Reader 26. He was also one of a volunteer team of editors of the inaugural Australian Poetry Members Anthology ‘Metabolism’ published in 2012. His poetry has been published in numerous journals in Australia and the U.S. with publications also in Israel, Rumania and New Zealand. David’s poems have been read on the Australian radio poetry program Poetica and have also featured on the U.S. radio poetry program Prosody. He is one of 9 poets featured on a CD titled “Adelaide 9”. In 2014 David won the University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor’s International Poetry Prize 2014 and was shortlisted for the Newcastle Poetry Prize. A chapbook, Only the Questions Are Eternal, is forthcoming in 2015 and can be purchased from Garron Publishing.