Immanuel Suttner: Four short poems

I’ve long felt a bit inferior
to plumbers and tradesmen
who arrive
and do their job
brick by brick
who resolve leaks
restore tiles
rewire circuitry
and leave
their job done
while I
work with words
on jobs that have no


The Old Lie

“They gave their lives …”
Their lives were taken
while they were doing
their best to keep them:
A land mine under the left tyre;
shot by “friendly” fire;
an overturned APC;
mortar fragments in the carotid artery.
“They gave their lives …”
Their lives were taken.



Above every blade of grass
is an angel with a walking stick
that taps the blade
and tells it

and above every body-mind
is an angel that taps it
with the unforeseen
and tells it
“let go”


In my Jewish National Fund
after seeing a Lebanese man
born in Barcelona
I climb back into my
Mission Australia car
to visit a bi-polar Thai woman
who lives in Australia’s biggest city
am I not the
United Nations
in a single man?

Immanuel Suttner

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