- 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
The Australian poetry scene, however you define it, is definitely thriving. So much so that it sometimes causes consternation. Perhaps you’ve been there at a poetry gathering or launch when someone wonders aloud whether, ‘thriving’ is one step removed from ‘overgrown’ – whether this healthy scene is actually in need of some ruthless pruning.
1. Whisky will take you back to a damp house on an island where your love dropped a rock on his own head and sat, dazed, in the caramel light 2. Dancing with a lover to Prince at 4am or …
Fittingly tiny by way of physical size, Captives is a beautifully produced collection of micro-fiction by the Melbourne author and critic Angela Meyer (known also as the blog writer, Literary Minded). While in a poetry-dedicated journal such as Cordite Poetry Review, it may seem odd to be reviewing a book that makes no explicit claims to being poetry – or, more specifically, the difficult-to-define mode of prose poetry – Meyer’s micro-fictions do seem to invite comparisons with contemporary prose poetry.
Judith Rodriguez’s The Hanging of Minnie Thwaites and Niall Lucy’s and John Kinsella’s The Ballad of Moondyne Joe are informative poetic explorations of the historical figures Frances Knorr, known as Minnie Thwaites, and Joseph Bolitho Jones, known as Moondyne Joe. The books are explorations and not interpretations, as the authors are aware of the trappings of context, of interpreting fragments of text from the past according to one’s own contemporary values. Of course, this is not completely avoidable and the postmodern notion of avoiding an authoritative account is itself, arguably, a condition of context.
Between the covers of All the Way Home is the life of a man called Jesse, up to middle age, written in clean, effective verse. The prologue explains that Jesse is looking back, his memories tangled like the roots of his plants: ‘If you don’t keep teasing out / the recollections / they get strangled’. We reflect first upon Jesse’s childhood on the road with his father, a travelling salesman, in the US. The image of his parents is striking: his mother’s hair ‘a blaze’, and his father’s the ‘colour of ordinary absence’. Later Jesse will fall for a woman whose hair is red, like the mother who died too young.
Love & Something is the sub-header of :etchings 9, and the something seems to stand for the multitudinous meanings the word love can inspire – familial, romantic, love of nature, passion for work – and the variety of things that sit beside it such as desire, heartbreak, longing and memory.
Of the two chapbooks under review, Lucy Holt's exquisitely crafted poetry in Stories of Bird pecks at single moments, both from an intimate as well as a bird's-eye view. Her use of symbolism is focused and sensory. Hers are deep and personal poems, with some empathetic politics, that draw the reader in. Alison Croggon's chapbook Ash, on the other hand, speaks with a more despairing voice.