Aidan Coleman

Aidan Coleman Reviews New and Selected Poems of Anna Wickham

Devotees of Australian literature are unlikely to possess more than a half-dozen single volumes by poets born before Federation, and their reading of such poets is generally limited to anthologies. The problem, I’d suggest, is one of availability more than desire.

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Review Short: Aidan Coleman’s Cartoon Snow

South Australian poet Aidan Coleman’s previous book of poetry, Asymmetry, was published in 2012. It charts Coleman’s traumatic experience of a stroke, and the resulting loss of symmetry in his body, life and writing. The book strings together revelations made startling through poetic bluntness, from the initial shock of incapacitation to the excruciation of gradual rehabilitation.

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The End of Weather

There is a way that summer stops short of nudity. The loose delight of your task as necessary as twins coordinating shirts and comedy at the exhibition match scheduled for short notice, like a low-fi Santa providing own beard. The …

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Review Short: Jeri Kroll’s Workshopping the Heart: New and Selected Poems

Workshopping the Heart brings together poems from Jeri Kroll’s five previous books of poetry, with thirty or so pages of new poems and the opening chapter of a verse novel. Her distinctive voice – lyric, tough and spare – is evident early.

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Review Short: Andrew Lansdown’s Inadvertent Things – Poems in traditional Japanese forms

Andrew Lansdown’s poetry has long been defined by the primacy of the image and a preoccupation with form. Inadvertent Things revisits the themes of nature, family and God through the familiar Japanese forms of tanka and haiku, and also the choka, a sort of extended tanka. The haiku is the form that features most often and always as part of a suite called a gunsaku, where the poems work independently but also cumulatively. All the terms are explained in a short introduction for the uninitiated, in which Lansdown expresses his intention to follow the spirit rather than the letter of the law.

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Presence: A Chapbook Curated by Graham Nunn

When I was invited by Cordite to curate this chapbook, my mind filled with one word … presence.

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Backyard Pool

1. Viewed from the decking above, your best friend’s pool holds the afternoon as a wobbly electricity. At the edge: puddles of deflated colour, white plastic chairs, a garden, other redundancies. 2. Far below the workings of sun, the surface-war …

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Review Short: Robert Gray’s Cumulus

Though Robert Gray’s status as a major poet is well established, both in Australia and overseas, he is sometimes dismissed as ‘merely’ a nature poet or, worse still, a poet of description. While Gray is narrower in scope than say Yeats, Auden or Murray, this charge is, of course, irrelevant to both the reader’s enjoyment and the place his poetry will find in any canon. Many leading poets of the second half of last century – Plath, Larkin, Wright, R.S. Thomas – could, to varying degrees, be similarly accused.

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