Croft, Julian

Australia, (b. 1941)

Marking Time

  1. for Jane and Felicity
  2.  
  3. I had an office once
  4. with a window and a calendar.
  5. I spent more time looking out
  6. the calendar than the window.
  7. Every morning I marked off
  8. another day, eager to get to
  9. where?
  10.  
  11. I left the office,
  12. as you leave everywhere in the end,
  13. and found another window
  14. to match the butcher’s calendar,
  15. marking time until I got to here
  16.  
  17. and remembered what butchers always knew,
  18. that marking lambs and pigs
  19. with rubber band or knife
  20. will make them grow and lose the taint
  21. which comes with time —
  22. but robs them of their future hopes.
  23.  
  24. I’ve marked too many essays,
  25. castrated too many days,
  26. it’s time to spend what I’ve been spared.

 Julian Croft. Ocean Island. Melbourne: John Leonard Press (2006).

About the Poet:

Julian Croft (b. 1941) is an Australian poet, teacher, fiction writer and literary journalist. He was born Newcastle, New South Wales and educated at Newcastle Boy’s High School, and the University of Newcastle (BA and MA).

Croft has traveled and taught in Europe and Africa, eventually returning to Australia to take a position as lecturer at the University of New England, NSW, Australia. He is now Emeritus Professor in the School of English, Communication there.

His work appeared regularly in Australian literary journals from the early 1970s and Croft has published four poetry collections. Croft’s poetry is informed by his travels and wide experience, and is noted for bringing a probing philosophical insight to images of the everyday world. [DES-04/17]

A random image of a pig, hog, boar or swine from the collection at Porkopolis.