Sylvia Malley: bestseller

26 November 2005
black lung of small regret
narcoleptic flickers in
fluorocity's 711 chivalry
a latex glove thrusts
its gladiolic prophecy
into the heart of the jumbo
jetcat, daytrippers mistaking
the harbour for a nation

the collective semiconscious
slurps in its uniform of quicksand
like a tour squad gelato sunday
in negotiation with soap bomb
analysts, did you forget the
immortality of dirt; the thawed
prawn, pericles, busks near
a bin

Sylvia Malley is a cousin of the late Australian poet Ern Malley. She is the daughter of Ern's cousin, Morris Malley. The Ern Malley literary scandal caused the Malley family to fear poetry for many decades. However, Sylvia, a Malley inheritrix, could not avoid the family's innovative poetic genes, and one lunchtime while browsing through the Australian Poetry shelf in Dymock's Bookstore, George Street Sydney, she discovered Ern's poetic oeuvre in the Penguin Book of Modern Australian Poetry [ed.Tranter/Mead]. Since then she has become an avid reader of contemporary Australian Poetry and a closet poet herself. Through her internet browsings she discovered that the on-line poetry journal 'cordite' was seeking submissions for a 'Children of Ern Malley' issue, so she decided to take a chance with one of her recent poems. Sylvia works as an optometrist in the business district of Sydney. In recent years she has become a keen harbour ferry spotter. She lives in Manly.

As reported on Cordite News Explosion, we're moved and astonished to admit that we didn't pick joanne burns as the author of this so-called poem.

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About Joanne Burns

Joanne Burns's most recent poetry collection is brush, Giramondo Publishing 2014, which won the 2016 NSW Premier's Kenneth Slessor Poetry Prize. She lives in Sydney.

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