Slot Machine Mumbo Jumbo

The man with the megaphone
elevates the twisted drone
inside a shrunken head.

Roll up, roll up
to the land
of shiny slot machines
hokey pokies
call it what you will
waiting for a thrill
today’s your lucky day!

Your favourite games are waiting
for you
only you
the stars have aligned
don’t ignore the signs.

The rabbits in the hat
are crazed in cramped quarters
spring them
sprung them
run amok
among em

Clinking coins
flashing lights
booming voices
hold you, need you
what is that I hear you say
promises of a rainbow day.

Just you and your machine
today you’ll feel like a queen
ain’t love grand.

The outside world has disappeared
in this enchanted place.

What magic is this
that can make everything

Note: you might want to listen to this at the same time Mambo No. 5

19 thoughts on “Slot Machine Mumbo Jumbo

    1. I was just going through my notebook – stumbled on an idea I was working on ages ago – I hate slot machines (know someone who has lost about $300,000 on them)so it’s not me sitting on that stool – haha. Here is a quote from Emily Dickinson:
      ‘I never saw a moor
      I never saw the sea
      Yet know I how the heather looks,
      And what a wave must be.’

  1. I am reminded of the women I used to see at the RSL when I worked behind the bar when I was going to Uni. They called everyone ‘Love’ wore stretch terrytowelling jumpsuits and had lots of jangling costume jewellery. Oh, and I almost forgot – they had those really tight perms that look like brillo pads. It was like a downmarket version of Vegas. I really enjoyed your poem. The world vanishes when you work there too!

  2. Dhyan asked the question… maybe it was the Andrew Wilkie demand that addicts be protected (a bit).

    “The outside world has disappeared
    in this enchanted place”. They were too in the early days when pokes subsidised entertainment. We saw and heard the world’s best free. Then they got rid of the bands and entertainers and they all became casinos supported by poor tragic people who do their pensions every fortnight!
    “Just you and your machine
    today you’ll feel like a queen.” And tomorrow there’s nothing left.

    Timely one GB!

    1. Stafford, I prefer the days when Queensland had no pokies and you had to go over the boarder to NSW to get to them (so it was an outing – not an everyday things). I hate pokies – mindless (horse racing is so much better – hahaha). I work in the addictions field for 10 years and always had an interest in gambling from a professional perspective.

  3. Oh my I saw Las Vegas and every other casino I’ve seen in this poem…it really made me laugh and at the same time think about those folks who park their mobile homes outside these places and stay at a machine all day….really got me thinking so early in the morning…head hurts. 😉

  4. I had a cousin who went through 2 farms and 400
    Grand at the horse races.
    He got glimpses of the rabbit at times.:)
    Mama told us not to gamble but he showed us .

    This is a bright glitzy dizzy poem.
    I especially love the rabbit and the last lines.
    Really special and most excellent.

  5. i’ve only gone to casinos to eat/drink/see shows but i never learned how to gamble properly ha ha, cardgames just confuse me, the slots always seem fixed or something,
    people with barrels of quarters on their laps endlessly feeding them, eyes glazed over…pretty scary really.

    1. It is scary tipota – what is going through their heads is not reflecting reality well (they probably think they look glamorous like the gamblers in the movies – but they just look like desperado robots).

  6. Fantastic! (and works wonderfully with the beat of Mambo No.5).

    Casinos and pokie machines freak me out a bit, perhaps it’s not just about people losing all their money, but that feeling of ‘otherworldliness’ you describe as well.

    1. Thanks Dhyan for the link – what a great poem (brings out the sleazy side). My poem is basically the soundtrack in one person’s head – the inner voice that natters away – the thought drift. Tina’s poem is more outward looking, observational I suppose – but really sums up the atmosphere.

  7. Really glad you posted this, Gabrielle – I love poetry (and any form of writing) that paints the poker machines in a bad light. They are bad news, huh?

    Great pacing in this one too.

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