Lucy Dougan

Delicate Men

I wake up in the house happy with the two men who are sleep-creased and delicate. They are trying out new meds. They compare notes and sometimes do cautious swaps. They take it or they don’t take it. Sometimes they …

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Contemporary Chinese Poetry in Translation: The Homings and Departures Project

Image by Wang Yin Homings & Departures is a poetry translation project of the China Australia Writing Centre (CAWC) at Curtin and Fudan Universities, and the International Poetry Studies Institute (IPSI) at the University of Canberra. As worldwide borders close …

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(after Shirley Hazzard) In the vicoli the great heft of Neapolitan washing flaps above me, driven by winds that might have ancient names or simply be cattivi, sucked out and back as if the streets themselves are breathing. Somewhere in …

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Chapter One: in which Edward survives in a sandwich

When, in the franchise, Edward becomes wraith-like you are inconsolable. I make you school sandwiches with blood-red sauce and polony. With the sauce I draw a love heart and embellish its middle with a cursive ‘E’. There, I say, for …

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The Wild Workshop: The Ghost of a Brontëan Childhood in the Life of Dorothy Hewett

An indelible part of the Brontë mythology is their symbiotic development as young artists in an isolated environment.

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Review Short: The Collected Poems of Fay Zwicky

On 2 July, 2017, my father sends me an article about Jewish Australian poet Fay Zwicky’s passing in Perth. I am four months into my Masters in Brisbane, where I am writing a manuscript of poetry and a thesis about tensions between my Jewish identity, memory, mental illness and hybridity as mediated through cultural objects and poetry.

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The Claphams

Lord and Lady Clapham are tired, and let’s face it, enwreathed in a genteel decrepitude. They’ve lodged in the small houses with the people so long now. Little people are the ones that caused the most perturbation even though Lord …

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Lucy Dougan Reviews Louise Nicholas

Louise Nicholas’s The List of Last Remaining very satisfyingly brings together a substantial body of her work. Its five, intelligently ordered sections each rise up to enact their shimmering, persuasive world and then fade out to make way for the next. As the author herself notes in the poem ‘Picture’, there is ‘something filmic’ afoot here.

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Review Short: Lucy Dougan’s The Guardians

‘The dog ran in there / It had been a mistake / to take up his old trail.’ The bold lines that open ‘The Old House’ (48) from Lucy Dougan’s latest collection, The Guardians, deliver a fine sample of Dougan’s deceptive simplicity. What better emblem for the concept of guardianship than the family dog? But the sentimental cocktail of love and loyalty embodied by this familiar friend is immediately crosscut by the ‘mistake’ of memory, an error of the senses that leads directly to the unheimlich.

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After You Shout

After you shout at the child we drive past pine branches stacked on the side of the road and I want to make a home of these materials in which she can live. You will be faraway or incommoded as …

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Paul Hetherington Reviews The turnrow Anthology of Contemporary Australian Poetry

John Kinsella is an Australian poet with a high profile and a long record of achievement, including winning the 2013 Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Poetry. He is also an assiduous anthologiser. Most notably, he edited The Penguin Anthology of Australian Poetry (2008), one of the more successful of recent attempts to establish an indicative canon of Australian poetry (although this was not, perhaps, Kinsella’s avowed intention with that book).

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Crawling Across Tram Tracks: Extracts from Volumes 5 & 6 of Fay Zwicky’s Journal

Fay Zwicky tells the story that in the early weeks of 2005, in the aftermath of the Indian Ocean tsunami, she was invited as one of WA’s ‘Living Treasures’ to write a public poem about the disaster, and to read it at the opening of the Perth International Arts Festival. She declined. It was too soon, she thought. This was ‘not a time for poems’ – was it? But already the politicians had weighed in with their ‘fine abstractions’ and preachers were parading their concern. Perhaps it was important, after all, to come out and speak with the words of the tribe about ‘true guilt’ that is ‘tongueless’.

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