- 109: NO THEME 12with C Maling & N Rhook 108: DEDICATIONwith L Patterson & L Garcia-Dolnik 107: LIMINALwith B Li 106: OPENwith C Lowe & J Langdon 105: NO THEME 11with E Grills & E Stewart 104: KINwith E Shiosaki 103: AMBLEwith E Gomez and S Gory 102: GAMEwith R Green and J Maxwell 101: NO THEME 10with J Kinsella and J Leanne 100: BROWNFACE with W S Dunn 99: SINGAPOREwith J Ip and A Pang 97 & 98: PROPAGANDAwith M Breeze and S Groth 96: NO THEME IXwith M Gill and J Thayil 95: EARTHwith M Takolander 94: BAYTwith Z Hashem Beck 93: PEACHwith L Van, G Mouratidis, L Toong 92: NO THEME VIIIwith C Gaskin 91: MONSTERwith N Curnow 90: AFRICAN DIASPORAwith S Umar 89: DOMESTICwith N Harkin 88: TRANSQUEERwith S Barnes and Q Eades 87: DIFFICULTwith O Schwartz & H Isemonger 86: NO THEME VIIwith L Gorton 85: PHILIPPINESwith Mookie L and S Lua 84: SUBURBIAwith L Brown and N O'Reilly 83: MATHEMATICSwith F Hile 82: LANDwith J Stuart and J Gibian 81: NEW CARIBBEANwith V Lucien 80: NO THEME VIwith J Beveridge 57.1: EKPHRASTICwith C Atherton and P Hetherington 57: CONFESSIONwith K Glastonbury 56: EXPLODE with D Disney 55.1: DALIT / INDIGENOUSwith M Chakraborty and K MacCarter 55: FUTURE MACHINES with Bella Li 54: NO THEME V with F Wright and O Sakr 53.0: THE END with P Brown 52.0: TOIL with C Jenkins 51.1: UMAMI with L Davies and Lifted Brow 51.0: TRANSTASMAN with B Cassidy 50.0: NO THEME IV with J Tranter 49.1: A BRITISH / IRISH with M Hall and S Seita 49.0: OBSOLETE with T Ryan 48.1: CANADA with K MacCarter and S Rhodes 48.0: CONSTRAINT with C Wakeling 47.0: COLLABORATION with L Armand and H Lambert 46.1: MELBOURNE with M Farrell 46.0: NO THEME III with F Plunkett 45.0: SILENCE with J Owen 44.0: GONDWANALAND with D Motion 43.1: PUMPKIN with K MacCarter 43.0: MASQUE with A Vickery 42.0: NO THEME II with G Ryan 41.1: RATBAGGERY with D Hose 41.0: TRANSPACIFIC with J Rowe and M Nardone 40.1: INDONESIA with K MacCarter 40.0: INTERLOCUTOR with L Hart 39.1: GIBBERBIRD with S Gory 39.0: JACKPOT! with S Wagan Watson 38.0: SYDNEY with A Lorange 37.1: NEBRASKA with S Whalen 37.0: NO THEME! with A Wearne 36.0: ELECTRONICA with J Jones
This is a volume of (mainly) prose poems, derived by its compiler/adaptor/author Ross Gibson, from a large dossier of New South Wales Police records. If these can be described as ‘found’ poems (even if they have been edited) it would be as likely to refer to them as ‘accidental’.
The speaker is… Reliable as anyone I’ve known, Bob Arnold is the kind of man for whom life works because (please excuse my sentimental aphorisms) he loves life’s work; he’s lucky too, since he makes his luck: wife, two girls, …
The bad news first … I am sorry to see the departure of Lisa Gorton as Cordite’s Feature Reviews Editor. Over the past 18 months, her astute eye, impeccable judgement and gracious style has produced – and leaves us with – a superb legacy of robust and engaging feature reviews. Gorton’s work is testament to what can happen with excellent writing from reviewers and an engaged editorial acumen.
Prepare the Cabin for Landing, as with much of Alan Wearne’s poetry, draws on popular culture, social observations and the Australian vernacular. I recall reading a review of an earlier Wearne collection which warned the reader that they would require a Wearne dictionary in order to understand the cultural references being made. Of course, no such dictionary exists, and as Adam Ford has argued previously in Cordite Poetry Review, Wearne’s poems can be difficult unless you are ‘either amazingly well-read or precisely of Alan Wearne’s generation (and interested in the same things as him) to have the right combination of knowledge, memory and experiences to understand or empathise with every poem in this book.’
The verse novel is a peculiar organism: descended from the sweeping epics that chronicled the birth of nations and the misadventures of wayward heroes, we can still find characters struggling on their ‘grand’ journey – likely to be a personal, emotional and/or psychological journey – with the occasional battle scene (though, this is more likely to take place on a much smaller, personal level). As a distinctly modern form, there is certainly much less aggrandisement of the natural world via mythical and magical hyperbole in the verse novel.
The young PhD was applying for a ‘Theory for Practising Writers’ teaching position in a Creative Writing degree. He had devised a three year course, the first year of readings, lectures, tutorials and essays which though extending as far back …
“When D’arcy Niland’s novel The Shiralee came out in the mid-fifties, the Australian film industry was in its twenty-five year coma, but such was the book’s popularity that film rights were quickly snapped up by overseas interests and the film …
If we seek a division in Australian poetry, we will not find it represented among the poems in these two anthologies. Wearne puts it adroitly in his introduction when he says about the Poetry Wars, ‘for all the legendary brouhaha it may have all happened at one party (and perhaps that's how the eventual movie will see it). If some of us played for different teams (and still may) remember the operative words are 'play' and 'teams'.
It seems to me that a poem should – in general – be a self-contained unit, either easily understood or a puzzle that contains the key to its solution. I'm happy to make exceptions for poems written in different eras or countries – such poems might need annotations to compensate for unfamiliar historical or cultural contexts.
Alan Wearne is one of Australia's most important poets. He is one of the foremost exponents of the verse novel in the world. His works include The Nightmarkets and The Lovemakers: Volume 1 &2.
Alan Wearne is an internationally renowned poet and verse novelist. His book The Lovemakers won Book of the Year and the Kenneth Slessor Prize for poetry at the NSW Premier's Literary Awards in 2002. Part Two of The Lovemakers is being published in 2004. He is a Melbourne poet who lives and works in the Illawara & Fremantle.