Heather Taylor-Johnson

Heather Taylor-Johnson’s latest books are the novel Jean Harley was Here and the poetry collection Meanwhile, the Oak, as well as Shaping the Fractured Self: Poetry of Chronic Illness and Pain, which she edited. She is an Adjunct Research Fellow at the J M Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice at the University of Adelaide.

Botanic Park

My son asks what colour is the sky and I say blue – just look at it, what a beautiful blue – and we stop and stare into the sky, see different things like the future (him) and the past …

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The Cake is Done. I’m Finished.

What do I have that you need? What do you have that I need? Even though we are running in circles the walls are hard, my face is bruised, vessels bleed. Numbers are hard and they don’t bend, like memory. …

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I. A book with a title that says it all After the pear fell into the milk, cacophony at the kitchen table me swearing a hole in my mouth as I lay down my book because like it or not …

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Somebody died three houses down it was the girl – and this is what I want to say – she was sixteen and could not breathe air failed to travel its path and floated just beyond her reach. She could …

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Caddy in Adelaide, from The Sound and the Fury You offer me crab apples, lightning bugs, a red pick-up with a confederate flag passing black men walking for miles, the gentle roll of the flat road leading to some other …

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Heather Taylor Johnson Reviews Young Poets: An Australian Anthology

Young Poets: An Australian AnthologyYoung Poets: An Australian Anthology (John Leonard Press, 2011)

“I’ve respected John Leonard Press since its beginnings in 2006, and over the years a theme has formed across its publications. Leonard’s poets have a lot in common. There is nothing slapdash about any of them. These are poets clearly enticed by language and by the theories of life. Don’t expect rhyming. Don’t expect clichés. And do not, above all, expect anything simple.”

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Heather Taylor Johnson Reviews Michelle Cahill

Vishvarūpa by Michelle Cahill Five Islands Press, 2011 Michelle Cahill’s second collection is marvellously named Vishvarūpa, Sanskrit for “manifold, having all forms and colours”. The cover is classic black and silver, with a close-up photograph of a Hindu deity’s sculpture. …

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Heather Taylor Johnson Reviews Libby Hart

This Floating World by Libby Hart Five Islands Press, 2011 This Floating World is Libby Hart’s long-awaited follow-up to her 2006 Anne Elder Award-winning Fresh News from the Arctic. Like Arctic, the collection is heavily dependent on both the natural …

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Heather Taylor Johnson Reviews Teri Louise Kelly

Girls Like Me by Teri Louise Kelly Wakefield Press, 2009 Apparently for some it’s abhorrent to assume that a writer writes about herself, but I’ve always loved that bit: the drama of a writer talking about her own life, or …

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