The Inexplicable Hardness of Things (Ian Gibbins)

Our location indeterminate: disused Mechanics’ Institute,
unlocked shipping container, crushed metal path beside
the bus lane or upgraded City Bypass. “It doesn’t matter
[…static…] you decide.”

Fairy floss hair in knots and she shelters under the glow,
reflects crossed wires, badly silvered disappointment.
“He texted me again last night.” Unnecessary now
to change trains,

since the surf is flat, fly-by cheeseburgers have jammed
the emergency release, recycle bins overflow the back end
of her shift. “Bite into pleasure”, they tell the Crow Patrol,
the razor wire.

Will nobody admit that cabbage palms and lilly pilly
trees cannot read, plates do not always break, rain can fall
from a clear blue sky? “How many lives can you lead
at the same time?”

Between my feet, bandages, a travel bag. Sandfly wheals
itch, irritated to bleeding point. Someone replaced fluoros
with LEDs. “I just don’t care anymore.” My screen, hers,
locks up, twice.

The Inexplicable Hardness of Things from Ian Gibbins on Vimeo.

Ian Gibbins is a poet, electronic musician and video artist, having been a neuroscientist for more than 30 years and professor of anatomy for 20 of them. His poetry covers diverse styles and media, including electronic music, video, performance, art exhibitions, and public installations, and has been widely published in print and online, including three books with accompanying electronic music: Urban Biology (2012); The Microscope Project: How Things Work (2014); and Floribunda (2015), the last two in collaboration with visual artists. For more info, see