Nathanael Pree



Review Short: Diane Fahey’s November Journal and Carmen Leigh Keates’s Meteorites

The most recent work by Diane Fahey, November Journal, and Carmen Leigh Keates’ first collection, Meteorites, represent two offerings of quiet intensity controlled and mediated by distinct voices and their respective energies.

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Review Short: Kristen Lang’s SkinNotes

Kristen Lang’s SkinNotes articulates an intense poetry and poetics of the body through a holistic series of lifelines in which skin, bone and organs are not so much dissected as regarded, reassembled and given human or other animate agency.

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Review Short: Ken Bolton’s Lonnie’s Lament: Towards a History of the Vanishing Present

Ken Bolton’s most recent collection expresses an intense sociability, co-mingling personal and communal memory to create poetry that draws on moments of apparent ordinariness, and ever so subtly transforms them into lines of understated enchantment.

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Review Short: Aden Rolfe’s False Nostalgia

Aden Rolfe’s False Nostalgia presents a collection of memories and corresponding vagaries of forgetting, which stimulate and unsettle in unpredictable and oblique turns of thought and phrase. His work includes philosophical, lyrical and confessional voices, the overall discourse serving to recreate and recover highly original self-objects in time and space.

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Review Short: Peter Rose’s The Subject of Feeling

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Review Short: Pam Brown’s Missing up

From the cover, let alone the first lines, the title appears apt: a sense of levitation, humming along wires, strands of illumination flickering through a work of direct and intimate voices, understated in its deftness and density, with light touches that lift the lexis, and air pockets in its seams of meaning. Spread out across the pages are samples of complete, if not absolute contemporaneity interspersed with work that decries the shortcomings of an age in which culture is so often presented as a commodity. Pam Brown’s latest collection showcases self-objects and articulates responses to salient concerns, providing masterful representations of the everyday and outré that take their time to settle into the spaces and absences within which they are framed.

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Review Short: Simon West’s The Ladder

In his third collection, The Ladder, Simon West presents a series of poems with the tensile strength of filigree and flower stems, split seconds where meaning occurs as a wavelet suspended above the mosaic particles that make up a beach. After my first reading, I feel sure that I have also felt sunlight glancing off the skin of a grape, tendrils curling around a wooden table leg, sunlight, wine and citrus. Meanwhile from back at the frontispiece, falls the delicate adumbration of half distinct colour from the ‘eyes turned to beautiful eyes’.

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Review Short: Les Murray’s Waiting for the Past

Half a decade on from appearance of the elongated shadow figure that adumbrated Les Murray’s last collection, Taller When Prone, the poet returns with stature intact and a magisterial resounding of strata and reach.

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Review Short: Joanne Burns’s Brush

Brush, the latest collection of poetry from Joanne Burns consists of layers juxtaposed in a profuse and generous abundance, styles not fused so much as flipped over and filed into an album as much as an anthology. What may appear to be random sections and selections on closer inspection consist of a gathering that implies a duty of care, assembling shared cultural and oneiric artefacts stripped of extraneous affects and putting on record that which is weird and wonderful and way out there.

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