Flash Art

for Rosalie Gascoigne in the NGV

by Phillip Hall

I sit, back against
the cantilevered opening that was once my Beer DeLuxe, to consume self
indulgence in long black and lemon tart
             a sorrow diagnosed as separation from God, though a partner’s
              constancy is the cladded marvel
of Fed Square’s sandstone, zinc and glass; a carbon neutral, catered
                                coherence within triangular
                                                               pinwheel grids:

                             I am outside
               the NGV’s hermetic seal
having outlived professional
usefulness, a pensioned
pile of retro-reflective discord
and half-understood assembled
                jigsaw precariously propped
                             in the verge:

At Rosalie Gascoigne’s Flash Art, I stammer
towards entropy and corrugated bitumen blasted
                      bushfire light; a cache
of geometric and retro
ravaged lines recycled
                in a beehive’s golden crossword
                                                     and concrete poem:

Later, over more coffee and cake, I shape up
                                   to this joy in signage, grand
                      and redundant
                                        on a gallery’s walls.

Rosalie Gascoigne has been a passion of mine for a long time so when I met ‘Flash Art’ (1987, tar on reflective synthetic polymer film on wood) in the NGV, the meeting had to become a poem. And Gascoigne’s title is so delightfully resonant with irony.

Rosalie Gascoigne’s ‘Flash Art’ can be viewed at: https://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/explore/collection/work/86750/

Phillip Hall lives in Melbourne, where he is a passionate member of the Western Bulldogs Football Club. His publications include Sweetened in Coals (Ginninderra Press, 2014), Borroloola Class (IPSI, 2018), Fume (UWAP, 2018) and (as editor) Diwurruwurru: Poetry from the Gulf of Carpentaria (Blank Rune Press, 2015). He also publishes the e-journal Burrow: https://oldwaterratpublishing.com & his forthcoming collection is Cactus, to be published by Recent Work Press in September 2021. 

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