Paul Kane



Extimate Subjects and Abject Bodies in Australian Poetry

This wry poem by Pan Zijie addresses language and human bodies as mobilised subjects. An Australian-born Chinese poet, Zijie has written in relative obscurity since publishing his first book, Vostok. Reading his striking collection Beijing Spring, published in 2015 by Maninriver Press, I wonder why I am not familiar with his work. After some online enquiries I learn that Pan holds a master’s in creative writing from Macquarie University and that he completed a PhD on representations of Chinese masculinity in Australian literature. His first collection received positive imprimaturs from David Brooks, Marcelle Freiman and Michael Wilding but I could find not a single review.

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Review Short: Judith Beveridge’s Hook and Eye

Last year I heard Judith Beveridge interviewed by Bronwyn Lea at the 2014 Queensland Poetry Festival. Aside from being left with the enduring impression that Lea should have her own TV show, I was also struck by a number of Beveridge’s revelations regarding her praxis. Beveridge confessed, for instance, that she does not like listening to music. Nevertheless, she described the process of writing poetry in a way that resonated with the classical foundations of lyric verse in music. Beveridge revealed that she begins writing by mobilising rhythm, rhyme, feeling and alliteration to bring forth the words and images of her poetry. She begins, in other words, from an embodied experience of language – as the philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty describes it in The Phenomenology of Language – that is essential to us all.

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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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Review Short: Robert Gray’s Daylight Saving: a selection of poems by Robert Gray

Daylight SavingIn ‘Minima’, Robert Gray writes that ‘the senses can mislead us, / …when we rely on only one of them’. Gray is in no danger of being misled. The dimension of synaesthesia in his perceptions has been widely noted, but it manifests itself in this collection as something both chronologically prior to, and conceptually broader than, the apprehension of one sense through another.

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Hafiz: Ghazal 75

The products from the workshop of the universe, all of it is nothing. Bring wine, for the goods of the world are nothing. The heart and soul long for the honor of intimacy with the beloved. That is all, for …

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Writing: Silence ::

To mark the surface (in gelid depths trout linger), to inscribe in point (mordant bites into metal), is giving voice to silence. Etymologies are wiser than our sayings, or, distillations of our perilous knowings. We write, but we are written. …

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Ali Alizadeh Interviews Paul Kane

Paul Kane is the Professor of English and Co-Associate Chair of English at Vassar College in the Hudson Valley, 75 miles north of New York City. In addition to being a prolific poet and scholar of American literature, he is one of the world’s foremost scholars of Australian poetry. He studied at the University of Melbourne as a Fulbright Scholar to Australia in 1984-85, and has, since 2002, served as Artistic Director of the annual Mildura Writers Festival. He is also the poetry editor of Antipodes: A Global Journal of Australian/New Zealand Literature, and was recently named General Editor of the Braziller Series of Australian Poets. I caught up with Kane over a couple of coffees in Melbourne recently, and the following interview was the result of their conversation.

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Text and Paratext: Ern Malley and the Function of the Author

The immediate target of the Malley hoax was Max Harris and those associated with Angry Penguins, but McAuley and Stewart also had ‘bigger fish’, as it were, in mind. Herbert Read in particular, the English poet and critic—whose writings were a significant influence on Max Harris’ own poetry and aesthetics—was very much in the hoaxers’ sights.

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