Bowling Andromeda

by Andrew Galan


I enjoy the split coloured shoes,
with laces sent grey from months of greasy fingered double knots
parallel heavy stitched centre ridges that are guts out
and flat soles tense on thick leather,
these hard shined reds and blues are ready for feet.

But I am wearing a pair of rubber thongs
so it’s into the box of bowling alley loaners presented from under counter.
Worn disinfected cottons itch toes and drag flaccid off shins
slouching into bunches under ankles as I lead the weighted ball
these socks drop me into gutters, take me on tearful chases
feed me sweet tomato sauce slathered hot dog
that has retained its skin to be served in long stale white bun
I wash it all with sugary thin cola from the pre-mix tap.

Sprinting from kiosk across dark pattern carpet
that expands flashing marches of space invaders and ricocheting metal pinballs
I run between two wide sliding glass doors.
Outside, the nearest building is a lit party under stars
it projects upward as far back in time as can be seen
until it is another galaxy inside our local group
travelling the 2.3 million light years distance
from Andromeda to collide with Bateau Bay
I return the bowling alley hires and socks
climb into our Datsun 180B’s flat back seat / mum drives
I shrug off all the generic questions
certain she is none-the-wiser about what I have done.


Andrew Galan is an internationally published poet and co-produces renowned poetry event BAD!SLAM!NO!BISCUIT!. Showcased at events including the National Folk, Red Dirt and Queensland Poetry festivals, and Chicago’s Uptown Poetry Slam, his verse appears in the Best Australian Poems, the Canberra Times, Nuovi Argomenti, Cordite, the Tundish Review and more.