Saturday, July 31, 2010

Glen Phillips read last Saturday at Perth Poetry Club

Each Saturday, from 2pm to 4pm, the Perth Poetry Club flaunts its wares at The Moon Cafe, 323 William Street, Northbridge. Fine poetry, food and drink. Open mic for aspiring writers, plus at least one guest poet a week. The founder and continuing force behind the scenes is Janet Jackson, poet, singer and mother.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Lend an ear to Rae Armantrout

I've been championing the work of Rae Armantrout of recent times, and some people have asked for some explanation of her work and/or style. I have replied, Go read her interviews - they're all over the place on the Net. But now here is a good recording of her reading a half hour of her poems, enough for anyone to get the swing of her style: lend your ear to this

Hope you enjoy.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Glen Phillips @ Perth Poetry Club this Saturday 2pm

At Perth Poetry Club this Saturday 31 July our featured guest is one of WA's best-known poets, Glen Phillips. Plus open mike as always. 2-4pm at The Moon, 323 William Street, Northbridge.

All welcome -- come and listen. Glen will be doing two sets, one in each half of the afternoon.

Glen Phillips writes poetry and fiction and is well known as a reader of his work nationally and internationally. He was a founder of the highly successful Poetry in Motion performance group in the 1980s. He is represented in 20 anthologies and has published 10 books of poetry. His poems and stories have appeared in Asian, American, European and British journals and on national radio and television. His latest book, The Moon Belongs to No One, will be published by Salt in 2010.

Glen is Director of the Landscape and Language Centre at Edith Cowan University.

Featured guests at Perth Poetry Club for August 2010:
7 Aug: DANNY GUNZBURG (poetry & song)
14 Aug: ANDY JACKSON (Melbourne)
21 Aug: ANTIPOET (the radical hack)
28 Aug: WA Spring Poetry Festival mega-gig with interstate guests MEG MOONEY and CHRIS MANSELL and local talent ROLAND LEACH and CORAL CARTER

5 Sep: National Poetry Week gig with SUE CLENNELL and PHIL MCNAMARA
11 Sep: MIKE COOPER (Tasmania) + local talent TBA
0406 624 578

Other poetry performances around town this week
* Fri 30 July Lots of poets are reading at the Bodhi Tree Cafe Bookshop, Leederville. 10am-12 followed by open mike.
* Sat 31 July Rachael Petridis's book launch, 2pm at Gallows Gallery, Glyde St, Mosman Park.
* Mon 2 August VOICEBOX 7pm at Clancy's Tavern, 51 Cantonment St, Fremantle. Features Peter Jeffery, Hassam Alnawaab, JP Quinton, open mike.
* Thu 5 August Lucky Dip variety night at Double Lucky Bar, 11/663 Newcastle Street, Leederville. Spoken word acts include Janet Jackson and (presumably!) Belowsky. Poets Corner open mike from 8pm, booked acts from 8:30.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Jenny Holzer plasters Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art with Polish poetry ...

There are various ways you can enliven the exteriors of large buildings. You can plaster them with billboards, graffiti, murals, or even ivy.

Another solution — pioneered over the last decade or two by the conceptual artist Jenny Holzer — is to plaster them with projections of poetry. And not just any old poetry. How about Nobel Prize-winning Polish poetry?

Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art, lately obscured from one angle by a giant circus tent, is hoping to stir and seduce people over the next three nights by projecting poetry onto the building’s northwest-facing facade. The work is by the Nobel laureate Wislawa Szymborska, conceived and arranged by Holzer.

More from The Boston Globe at

Monday, July 26, 2010

SOL: A new English literary magazine out of Mexico

A new on-line literary magazine, Sol: English Writing in Mexico, edited by writers Bill Pearlman and Eva Hunter, is available to you at no cost. If you're a writer, you should check it out. If you're a reader, you should check it out. The first issue has writings from C.M. Mayo, Tony Cohan, Halvard Johnson, Wim and Pat Perrin, James Cervantes and others. SOL is meant to be a literary vehicle for both veteran writers like those mentioned above, and new writers like this issue's Margaret Tallis, Jan Harvey, and Carolyn Hernandez. The magazine will come out three times yearly. The on-line version is available without cost by subscribing; a yearly hard-copy anthology will be available at each year's end. We hope you'll enjoy the fine writing in this first issue.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Galway Kinnell - US Poet

One of my favourite poets, and no doubt an influence on some of my poems, is Galway Kinnell, US poet with a very distinctive voice. His 'Book of Nightmares' was a huge influence on many younger poets when it appeared in 1971, and his selected poems collection 'Body Rags' was another which taught me a lot. I have read a lot of Kinnell's work over the years, and have come to a healthy conclusion to be as much an individual poet myself as he is himself. No doubt I have learnt some techniques from his work - mainly about pace and line endings - but I no longer feel I am influenced by him.

He is the focal point of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation blog now at

Here's a quote:
In all of [Kinnell's] collections, but particularly in those of recent decades, there is a sense of a relentless striving toward a poetry that is not based on emulating music, chant, Hebraic verse or any other constructed model, but on the physicality of words themselves. For Kinnell, every word has its own weight, texture, taste and mouth feel, which, as he writes in “Blackberry Eating,” “I squeeze, squinch open, and splurge well.” His poems have come closer and closer to a keen appreciation for the value of words for their own unique existence as corporeal things, a savoring of the pure languageness of language.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Position Vacant: Perth Writers Festival Assistant Sought

The Perth International Arts Festival is seeking a literary, enthusiastic and diligent individual to assist the Program Manager: Perth Writers Festival for the 2011 Festival.

Appointment 2 Aug 2010–8 April 2011
(10 weeks @ 3days/ week, 25 weeks fulltime).

Applications close Friday 23 July 5pm.

Download application details here.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Poem: after sheila murphy’s ‘the reason I don’t want to is no reason at all’

the sun lights up the powerboard (the source)
of today there is little history (diaspora surrounds)
a set scene / only honeyeaters fly (still weather still)
silence of Sunday morn (end or beginning, depending)
priests have their work cut out today (nightclub girls sleep late)
the congregation is aged and dislikes change (she edits her sermon)
there is no pleasing everyone (down the ages)
even though the sun warms our backs (the source)
babies’ cries turn to laughter (that loving feeling)
mottled dog walks by the river / ibis fly from the wetlands (genesis)

first draft / sunday 18.7.2010

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Celebrating July 14th

Quand vous serez bien vieille, au soir, à la chandelle,
Assise auprès du feu, dévidant et filant,
Direz, chantant mes vers, en vous émerveillant :
Ronsard me célébrait du temps que j’étais belle.

Lors, vous n’aurez servante oyant telle nouvelle,
Déjà sous le labeur à demi sommeillant,
Qui au bruit de mon nom ne s’aille réveillant,
Bénissant votre nom de louange immortelle.

Je serai sous la terre et fantôme sans os :
Par les ombres myrteux je prendrai mon repos :
Vous serez au foyer une vieille accroupie,

Regrettant mon amour et votre fier dédain.
Vivez, si m’en croyez, n’attendez à demain :
Cueillez dès aujourd’hui les roses de la vie.

Sonnets pour Hélène, 1587

Candlelight Blues

When yore gitten old at candlelight
Sittin’ at the fire gonna spin all night,
You’ll say sorta marvelin’ as y’sing my song,
“Good old Ronsard sang when Ah was young.”

Then y’won’t have a maid what hears that soun’,
Jist about t’fall asleep an’ all tired down,
Who ain’t gonna wake when she hears ma name
An’ start praisin’ yore name of immortal fame.

Ah’ll be six foot under, no skeleton,
‘Neath the myrtle groves is where my soul will run;

You’ll be dreamin’ at the hearth in a messy ole way,
Sorry you was proud, now Ah’ve gone away.

Better saddle up yore horse, don’t wait all night,
Pick yore roses today, then you’ll be all right.

— G. R. Tejada-Flores, 1961

Thanks, Patrick for this illustration and poem.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tuli Kupferberg bows out at 86

from The New York Times:

Tuli Kupferberg,
the poet, singer and professional bohemian who went from being a noted Beat to becoming, in his words, “the world’s oldest rock star” when he helped found the Fugs, the bawdy and politically pugnacious folk-rock group, died on Monday in Manhattan. He was 86 and had been a longtime resident of Greenwich Village.

He had been in weak health after suffering two strokes last year, said Ed Sanders, his friend and fellow Fug.

Mr. Kupferberg was something of a Beatnik celebrity when he and Mr. Sanders started the Fugs in 1964. Already in his 40s, he was an anthologized poet and published a series of literary magazines with titles like Birth and Yeah. And to his chagrin and embarrassment, he had also found a kind of notoriety as the inspiration for one of the characters in Allen Ginsberg’s poem “Howl.” He was the one who “jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge this actually happened and walked away unknown and forgotten.”

More at

Roeli Joosten, Amanda Joy and Maureen Sexton @ The Fringe Gallery 25th July

This month 25th July the Fringe Gallery is delighted to announce our guests are, poets Maureen Sexton and Amanda Joy and dancer Roeli Joosten .

Together they will present contemporary haiga and haiku with a buto/taboo performance.

The night will also have an open mic segment.

The information below gives a small descriptive glimpse into this fascinating mini universe of poetic style and performance.

Haiku is a traditional form of Japanese poetry that is succinct, minimal and imaginative. It often has a seasonal reference and a ‘cutting word’. In English haiku the ideas can be expressed with a short line, a long line and another short line.

Haiga, in simple terms, is a haiku poem and its image or painting.

Buto/taboo performance contains the unexpected with no set style but always poignant. Buto appeared first in Japan after the second world war and was viewed as revolutionary and controversial in its form.

See you there

Monday, July 12, 2010

Issa Haiku

just for me
a storm, winter wind
and hail

-Issa, 1815

Western Australian Forecast Areas Map

Western Australian Forecast Areas Map: "- Sent using Google Toolbar"

A much-needed wet and windy day for this town, but no good for my walking therapy. Talking therapy I'm a champ at, as friends who drop in know. Now the sun is struggling to penetrate thick cloud cover, and the Sweet Alice is spilling out onto the driveway. Storm water is running a creek down to the Swan River through the wetlands opposite, and ducks and ibis are feasting gloriously. It's a good day to be alive if you're not sleeping rough. Beneath the bridges would have been crowded last night as we sat in gas-fired comfort watching the World Cup. A rich society like ours should have enough warm beds for all, no questions asked.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

YouTube - Election 2010 Spoof Trailer - GetUp!

YouTube - Election 2010 Spoof Trailer - GetUp!

Brilliant. Watch it and weep.

Tuttle News -

Japanese teachers and students are excited about 196 new kanji that have been added to the list of official "joyo kanji" taught in Japanese primary and secondary schools. These are the first changes since 1981. Simultaneous, 5 kanji have been deleted, which brings the total up from 1,945 to 2,136. To receive a copy of ...the official Ministry of Education list, write to JD Wilson at

Friday, July 09, 2010


I watch my zipper scar
rise and fall in the mirror

raw meat

everything I see and think
means something to me now

so I tell you about it

life enhanced
like lemon on fish

horn section cuts a lyric
above cross rhythms

A Conversation with Professor Patrick McGorry (Free Event - Melbourne)

Join Australian of the Year and mental health reform advocate Professor Patrick McGorry for a candid conversation about his passion for improving the mental health of young Australians.

Professor McGorry will also be joined by a panel of mental health advocates to discuss the issues facing young Australians and how the community can influence change.

Thursday, 29 July
7.30pm - 9.30pm

Plenary Hall 1, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
1 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf
Parking available at cost


To book a seat and register your question to Professor McGorry, click here

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

WS Merwin to be US Poet Laureate 2010/11

Following in the footsteps of greats such as Robert Frost and Elizabeth Bishop, WS Merwin will take up the mantle of America's poet laureate this autumn.

The 82-year-old poet has won the Pulitzer prize twice and is the author of more than 30 books of poetry and prose. "He leads us upstream from the flow of everyday things in life to half-hidden headwaters of wisdom about life itself," said James H Billington, librarian of Congress, announcing Merwin's appointment. "[His] poems are often profound and, at the same time, accessible to a vast audience."

WH Auden selected Merwin's first book of poetry, A Mask for Janus, for the Yale Series of Younger Poets award in 1952. In the 1960s Merwin decided to stop using punctuation in his poems. He said he had "come to feel that punctuation stapled the poems to the page ... whereas I wanted the poems to evoke the spoken language, and wanted the hearing of them to be essential to taking them in."

Merwin has lived in Hawaii since 1976. An avid gardener, he grows endangered palm trees on a former pineapple plantation. "Like William Wordsworth, he is passionately interested in the natural world," said Patricia Gray, head of the Library of Congress's poetry and literature centre. "Although his poems often deal with simple, everyday things, there is a nourishing quality about them that makes readers want more."

Billington pointed to Merwin's poem Heartland, where he said that Merwin "seems to suggest that a land of the heart within us might help map the heartland beyond – and that this 'map' might be rediscovered in something like a library, where 'it survived beyond/ what could be known at the time/ in its archaic/ untaught language/ that brings the bees to the rosemary'."

Merwin will take over the post from Kay Ryan in October, holding it for a year. He told the New York Times that he wanted to emphasise his "great sympathy with native people and the languages and literature of native peoples" and his "lifelong concern with the environment" during his tenure as laureate, although he admitted that he does "like a very quiet life".

"I can't keep popping back and forth between here and Washington," said Merwin – but he was looking forward to "being part of something much more public and talking too much".

article from

Celebrating NAIDOC Week with Indigenous Jazz on ABC

Hear a documentary on indigenous jazz vocalist Georgia Lee, courtesy of Radio National's AWAYE! Re-broadcast on ABC Jazz on July 9 at 2pm.

See her biog and career history at

And, there's more! (Sorry, all the steak knives have gone ): Replays of great interviews,etc. On the site as above they are hyperlinked, but just as a taster I list them below.

St John Coltrane on Saturday Extra

Mar 22, 2010

Journalist Garth Cartwright tells of his journey through the USA, starting at San Francisco's St John Coltrane African Orthodox Church.

Interview: Branford Marsalis

Mar 5, 2010

An interview with jazz saxophonist Branford Marsalis.

Interview: Sandy Evans

Apr 21, 2010

Australian jazz saxophonist/composer Sandy Evans in-conversation with Classic FM's Margaret Throsby.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Back on deck again, but just.

Hell is where you find it. But once there, it turns out to be a cul de sac and you have to persevere to turn around and get out of there. I am struggling my way back from CABG x 4. A rather Kafkaesque experience in many ways. More to come in time to come as I get my wits back. Thanks for the many many good wishes during my incarceration in RPH.