James Stuart

James Stuart’s first full-length collection of poems, Anonymous Folk Songs, is published by Vagabond Press (2013). His other book is Imitation Era (Rare Object Series, Vagabond Press, 2012). He was a 2008 Asialink literature resident in Chengdu, China and works as acommunications manager.

Creek Gully Dreaming

Fan-tailed, a brown cuckoo dove swoops across the highway, settling on verge.  You could it take it as a sign there’s undercurrent to asphalt, that it’s the world flowing beneath us. A vinyl-clad demountable demurs  roadside. Blurred country flips through vignettes …

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LAND Editorial

When we chose to edit an issue of Cordite Poetry Review around the theme of ‘Land’, it was with an interest in the inherent openness of the word.

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Submission to Cordite 82: LAND

LandDisturbed land. Conserved land.

Whose land? Yours, mine, the landlady’s?


Land unlocked.

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After Fu Baoshi

Something so immediate like a heart attack requires decades of preparation: the artist hovers outside the frame & in front of Prague Castle waiting for a gesture to mark the times. Above the games, further east, a bomber pilot absently …

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Review Short: Outcrop: radical Australian poetry of land

Outcrop: radical Australian poetry of landAs I write this review, sunlight filtered through a pall of smoke casts a dull orange glow over my kitchen bench. The Blue Mountains are burning. Sydney’s haze resembles downtown Beijing’s and it’s only October. Such an apocalyptic scene – part of the ‘Australian experience’ I am assured by our Prime Minister – provides context for the world into which Outcrop and its ‘radical poetry of land’ emerges. This is not to suggest that the anthology’s outlook is primarily environmental, but that alternative ways of examining land are sorely needed.

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Fall in love. Do it now. (사랑에 빠져 버려라. 지금 당장.)

Nutritionists. Openly 9 out of 10 recommend a lifestyle & know the thick-shakes in all tastes & sizes are coming so recommend the following: (with the exception of the following because the following cause: Barbecued food Deep fried food Food …

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Sudden Rain, Tilba Tilba (갑작스런 비, 틸바 틸바*)

We no longer go out to paint, unless the object to be represented is such that it cannot be transported. – Lang Shi Ning (Giuseppe Castiglione, Qing Dynasty court painter) The fly-screen door has only just banged shut & already …

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The Fire Ants Variation

Invariably described as an ecological disaster, fire ants are the evolved antithesis of market garden poets. Recently, a lyrebird's corpse was found littered with crimson pustules in bushland adjoining a continental herb patch. The ants infiltrated this land obscured in …

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The Lyrebird Variation

What is branding? The lyrebird has created this system & preaches it like a benevolent ruler, emphasising freedom of choice, speech, expression. Its plumage is made of melody, a jingle of colour shifting through all the seasons of the bush. …

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Constant Haze (Notes From Chengdu)

Five weeks and I have still not visited Mao's statue, which stands at the heart of Chengdu's First Ring Road. On the map in one of the city's English language magazines his presence has been reduced to a vector-based outline, …

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Tibetan Internet Shield

Chinese text 03:     Near the city centre's First Ring Road a bus explodes like a repressed memory: a shoddy job, done fast & dirty many years ago; in an alleyway, an outline knives a young Han couple. For …

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The White Horse

Chinese text 01:     Wanting so much to learn the classifier for poems about classifiers, I sought out the wisest teacher; she handed me a black ceramic pot the spout of which now daily flowers into smog. I needed …

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James Stuart reviews Words and Things

Despite my slightly over-the-top and easily pregnable assertions about what are to my mind the lesser works enclosed therein, it became clear to me as I read (looked?) that Words and Things had a significant contribution to make to our understanding of contemporary poetics. Foremost among these is the question of what constitutes a concrete poem and, more generally, what constitutes visual poetry.

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James Stuart reviews Luke Davies

Davies does not truly develop from the ambitious ?´Totem Poem'. For the most part his love poems, some of which rhyme and flow better than others, are snapshots recounted in a language which, while tender, flounders upon certain images, such as when he compares the glow of his lover's cheeks to that of a lantern, or when he notes the lovers floating in a river with their ?´midday blisses' and the sun blessing their ?´watery kisses'.

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James Stuart Reviews Robert Adamson

What emerges is a patched-together narrative of suburban life in post-World War II Sydney. But the dark tremors that will crack open Adamson's world are peppered throughout this idyllic pastiche: his dyslexia, an alcoholic father, an intense dream-like state of mind in which consequences emerge only as they appear-

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Q&A with Mathieu Hilfiger and Sebastien Raoul

The lasting image that I will retain of Mathieu Hilfiger and Sebastien Raoul is the ever-so French portrait I took of them at the conclusion of our entretien on another biting Paris winter morning. In the photograph, Sebastien is wearing a bright red coat and black beret, and is ill shaven. Mathieu has on a black woollen coat, and a thick, grey scarf that is tied in a knot under his chin.

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Q&A with Pablo Garcia

When Pablo Garcia imparted his belief that a) Poets were shamans of today and b) Poetry was the trunk from which all other branches of art sprouted, I'll admit that I had trouble staying my left eyebrow. In the end, it remained on my forehead and I was able to engage Garcia on his thoughts regarding the cross-breeding or m?©tissage of the arts, and the interconnectivity of the world we live in.

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Q&A with Jean Orizet

As my plane touched down at Charles de Gaulle airport on a drizzly winter evening, I realised that I had completely overlooked the need to organise accommodation. Likewise, I had failed to contact any poets, nor indeed, had I succeeded in gaining any knowledge of French poetry beyond what had previously been fed to me. In the end, though, despite a half-hour walk in cold rain, I found a warm if somewhat over-priced hostel and, eventually, after hours rummaging through bookshops around the city, four editor/poets with four very different views of poetry and poetics.

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