Joel Ephraims

Pause Rapide

Hype was out and about

Along the ramps under
The green machinery of you.

He rolled one of his
More liable properties
Over the darkness
Inside the fence where
The window dogs
Do their sand labours with
Midnight faces to the sun.

The biggest drought on record
Was found shrunken
To less than the size
Of a car mobile
In the chemical silhouette
Which held up one of the cameras
To Assad’s scripted response.

Jesus of narrative crept
Into the science screen at 2am.
I was there with Bill who first saw him.
A doctor was solving all the murders
By simplifying Machiavellian dress codes
In a slime phoenixes’ helmet.

Within fifty years, some scientist says—
In 50 years from now,
under a business-as-usual scenario,
80-90% of disasters will be driven by climate change.





Note: The lines in italics are extracts from a quote by Prof. John Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany, quoted by Damian Carrington in his article for The Guardian Australia online, first published on Monday 23 July 2016. The article can be found here: ‘Disasters linked to climate can increase risk of armed conflict’



Joel Ephraims lives on the South-East Coast of NSW. In 2011 he won the Overland Judith Wright Poetry Prize for new and emerging poets and in 2013 his first collection of poetry Through the Forest was published as part of Australian Poetry and Express Media’s New Voices Series. His poems have appeared in Voiceworks, Overland, Tide, Cordite, Seizure, Kindling and Mascara. He has been commissioned to write a series of poems for The Red Room Company’s The Disappearing which are forthcoming.