Jeremy Balius

We’re the William St Brigade

Out here the archangel of William St
dreams her iron dreams, a touch sorrowful.  We
gubbins gurk & come a gutzer.  Life lived as
a listening post, our ears to the pavement,
the dark word’s in the soil – we spring roots for man-
kind to no avail.  We’re the William St
Brigade, tho’ we don’t
know why & we don’t
know what it means.  Hook-
shops & horse feathers,
business is not what it
once was & all of
the lights turn green, the
greenness of absolute.

Illywhackers and hornswogglers all of us,
the William St Brigade!  We defend the
bookshelves of rootless gypsy-thought Bedouin-
isms & guides to hidden meanings in conver-
sation.  We go down.  Along the walls lean men
who’ve already gone down.  Inside shop windows,
black Madonna candles
curtsy in the heat. 
Doorways stand brazen
like squadrons of mag-
pies.  Shadows grow slow,
as if they must with
no offence to any-
one.  Saggy sogging

carhorns croon & croak.  The smell of these ladies
& lights crawls from bulb to bulb barking.  Our small
beat is small & we can find solace in in-
transigence, resisting some paradisal
misery.  Longing for Eden, but feeling
like exiles.  Is the street dead, or has it just
disappeared behind
an array of concrete
or unpalatable
immaterial
realities?  Don’t
hate the lobby-gow;
we grow weary &
this is wearying.

On this block here, I is not I: these selves are
passed beyond here.  What I’m saying is we can
anticipate probable responses here,
but the meanings attached to them are unknown. 
Tho’ what I think I might be saying is this:
we never could expose what is concealed here,
only ever con-
cealment.  & what you
think I’m saying is
deathly consequence
of the deaths of our
gods.  The haloes are
hidden, hidden (pre)
(as)sumptions.  Car tracks

vitiate the heart’s deepest longing for: now 
first understand it tautologically:
the street is a sign of ours made unknown.  &
the unknown demands us to reflect here &
imitate.  The William St hot surface
is like a poem: it means.  It does not just
be.  All these surface
appearances are fear-
some, but we are fear-
lessness.  William
St Brigade: We do
not dare to be our
selves out of boredom
& repetition:

two menaces.  We conceal all secrets too
intimate to reveal & we do suspect
others similarly afflicted, tho’ of
course unable to unveil all that is hidden. 
Spelunkers of the heart, descend!  Now our doubt
is the street’s silent partner: if street noise is
repressed silence, then
boy oh boy oh boy
you better make your
peace with the repressed
silent doubt, concealed
fickle echo.  Pursue
hyperbolic self-
effacement, the self-

interest loosening within us is an
antimetabole, like speaking in tongues
about the falseness of our last impressions:
birthless & deathless in this space occupied
by ascetic denial.  The haunting heads
down the wind foot passage-ways.  The haunting is
the hereness & the
newness & the seem-
ingness, the wombness,
the obscurantism,
the William St-
ness.  Hey Mutt & Jeff,
put on the gyver, lads! 
You pishers better

not be Mozart & Liszt!  In the straight dullness
of the relative down here in concrete scunge,
we’ve been groaning in our travail together
until now.  We know it methodically
but cannot understand the methods.  So?  We’re
the William St Brigade, we lean on our shop
walls, we keep our ears
to the pavement, we’re
concerned with matters
of the heart & roots,
Eden & iron
dreams, being fearless,
but we don’t know why
& we don’t know what

it means.
 

 

 

Oh, Weary Night
(in response to Bob Dylan’s liner notes in Highway 61 Revisited)

Oh, Weary Night stepping off Erich-Weinert-Strasse to
confess your sins & beg for another chance, why do
you wail?  You pray to your secret gods & appeal to
Expectation for healing, but your stretch from drunken
bars all-the-day over & your misconstrued hope may
not be enough to clear those bags hanging heavy under
your erratic eyes.  As long as they match your shoes,
right Weary Night?  I can hear Law & Order pounding
on the door & stamping their feet & they’re hollering
Wait till Newton gets a load of this! – for they are in
cahoots with Expectation & they answer directly to the
Working Class Hero who I saw walking down Erich-
Weinert-Strasse yesterday preoccupied with promises
of Berlin being all that the Land of Obtuse had
promised it’d be.  What’s that, Weary Night?  You
know I’ll miss you when you’re gone?  Well, just wait
till Mr. Law & Mr. Order break down that door & find
you exorcising demons of brooding within your head. 
Wait till they find out what those voices tell you – that
you are to go to the mountain of Cherish in the Land of
Obtuse, that there waiting for you is Great Sleep who
has summoned the Three Magi by having them follow
Orion’s belt (which seems so phallic, doesn’t it?) & has
exhorted them to leave their meaningless gifts behind
this time.  Law & Order will laugh that rotten chortle &
they’ll take you before the Working Class Hero & say
to him Look upon this wretch who believes in Great
Sleep.  We found him in the place they call Try,
speaking to the Keyhole-less Keyholder
.  Then Law &
Order will run around shouting Illiteracy! &
Unenlightened! & maybe even Egoist!, contradicting
themselves, but what do they care?  The Working Class
Hero will give the people Barnabas because in the end,
his hands can’t get that clean & besides, he always
makes sure Expectation is happy.  He’s not gonna lose
nuthin’ over you now, is he?  Berlin isn’t that terrible -
it beats the Factory Asylums or searching for National
Identity.  Oh, so you’ve left your forceful nature behind
you now, have you Weary Night?  The only person who
cares about that now is Great Sleep, but he is
meditating on the notion of Relinquishing the
Complexity of Everything-Being-Alright (or Simplicity
of…depending on what day it is).  The empty-handed
Magi walk & Expectation has decreed them to bring us
out of Winterland!
, but they are tired from Berliner
cigarette burns & mirrors lit by neon-light
proclamations of Inner Beauty.  Quick, Weary Night,
through the window!  Law & Order just made it in. 
Wait, Weary Night, you’ve got to lower the ladder first. 
Too late.  Fare thee well, Sorrowful Loneliness.  Good
evening, Mr. Law & Mr. Order.  Welcome to Try. 
Weary Night?  He has gone to the Land of Obtuse to
climb Cherish & meet Great Sleep & to wait for the
Three Magi.  Oh, there’s no such place?  Well, then
you’ll find him lying on the street.  Which street is it? 
It’s called Erich-Weinert-Strasse.  My name?  They call
me the Keyhole-less Keyholder.  Let me show you to
the door.  Good evening to you, Gentlemen. 

Finally alone again.

 

 

 

JEREMY BALIUS

Jeremy Balius writes fiction and poetry for the last of the red hot lovers.  The sad thing is that he actually believes it.

Jeremy founded Black Rider Press <www.blackriderpress.com> in 2009 as a platform to promote emerging and established Australian poets and authors both nationally and internationally. 

Jeremy is.

Jeremy’s two step guide for increasing masculinity

1)Forget ‘increase’ and ‘masculinity’.
2)Just be.

3 responses to “Jeremy Balius

  1. Pingback: Stylus Poetry Journal #37 – Street/Life « Another Lost Shark

  2. Great poetry here.
    Cheers from Panama!

  3. Pingback: The Garage Sessions 1: We’re the William St Brigade « Am I the Black Rider? Yes.

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