Brett Firman


drunk on the looks

of the older boys


winnie blues in a corner


tipsy from a ten dollar note

slipped to a small toothless smile

at the local grog shop


cans littered on the grass

words littered over words

treading lightly

a graveyard

of unfamiliar faces


She wasn’t supposed to be there

slinking around

red velvet and fish nets


rotting flesh


howling in packs

furtive looks at the other girls

blending in by the patio

of broken glass

with a hint of

a redhead passed out

on a torn couch


they ducked under

the hills hoist

smiling into the blue light

of the bug zapper

smiling in the red footy jersey

of the bug zapper


he offered us a drag

broad shoulders

exploding into the circle

ominously white teeth

nervous giggles

play it cool


Hold my nose while I swig


with a metho undertone

from a pop-top bottle

in her purse


they said come

they said it’ll be fun


we’re almost sixteen


we live

in malicious white expanses

of bay windows and outdoor recliners


we knew their games

and lingering clutches


we weren’t an almost human


She smiled

taking the first bite



Brett Firman is an emerging fiction writer and poet from Melbourne. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Monash University majoring in Creative Writing and is currently completing a Master’s Degree in Journalism. Brett is passionate about social justice, in particular gender equality and LGBTIQ rights. She has previously been published in Verge 2016: Futures for her political poem “Flowers of Nauru”. Brett is a strong believer in the cathartic nature of writing; therefore, she draws inspiration from lived experience and incorporates everyday speech into her writing.