Friday, January 29, 2016

Villanelle at Bridgeguard Blog - Jane Williams


I simply wished to look upon a face –
you paused mid-sweep and gave me back my smile,
a simple thankyou doesn’t make first base.

Distracted by the pull of thing and place,
of church and bridge, of endless greening miles,
I simply wished to look upon a face

and there you were, presenting yours with grace.
This path you’ve cleared, I might yet walk awhile,
a simple thankyou doesn’t make first base.

Though history leaves fine lessons in its trace,
the changes on the human map beguile.
I simply wished to look upon a face

and so you let me, nothing left to waste.
Such beauty in your unassuming style,
a simple thankyou doesn’t make first base.

You held my hand and then you held my gaze,
a photograph to store in memory’s file.
I simply wished to look upon a face.
A simple thankyou doesn’t make first base.

Alwyn Marriage at Mattie Furphy House (Western Australia)

FAWWA and WA POETS INC present
with Alwyn Marriage

Please join us on Wednesday 3 February for a night of poetry with visiting UK poet, Alwyn
Marriage. Alwyn will be sharing some of her work, as well as her insights on the UK poetry

There will also be a showcase of local poets reciting their chosen works. Wine and cheese

Alwyn’s poetry is widely published in magazines and anthologies, and four of her eight
published books have been poetry collections. She has won and been placed in a number of
competitions, held Poet in Residence posts with Ballet Rambert and with the Winchester
Arts Festival and been awarded an international Rockefeller scholarship in Bellagio, Italy.

Alwyn is currently Managing Editor of Oversteps Books, holds a research fellowship at the
University of Surrey, and gives readings all over Britain and abroad. Previously she has been
a university lecturer, chief executive of two international literature and literacy NGOs and
Editor of a journal.

Visit for more information.

Venue: Mattie Furphy House, cnr Clare Copse and Kirkwood Road, Swanbourne
Entry cost: $10 FAWWA and WAPI members, $15 non-members

Thursday, January 28, 2016

News that stays News - poem 28

If you donate blood every day, you may feel weak.

I pinned her down like a rare butterfly, but still she flew.

Live and free, January 28.

The more water there is, the more danger of the virus spreading.

"... The US is calling for urgent action."

Love and life and death – themes of our daily bread.

Our Daily Bread - poem by AB

What ingredients mix well for a good poem?
To whip up a froth I open Windows, pour myself
a coffee, and listen to jazz on the player.

A little spice more. Her bra hangs on the door,
all lace and silk. Super realism catches in my throat

– it is a Monk turn of phrase, the same old 88
but sung so many ways! We have tongues and talk

in 26 character clusters, rhythm section
from our hearts to the roof of our mouth.

Love and life and death – themes of our daily bread.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Bee's Tit

Life is a concept album
As summer breezes dust off
the holding yards,
North stays steady in a storm.

We rarely complete our plans.

It’s a game of millimetres,
of a bee’s tit.  Where
you came from

takes you to where
you go: from dust
to dust.

to us with confidence,
is the undertaker’s slogan.

When they dropped Father’s coffin
Father would have liked that.
He was good at pointing out
mankind’s failings.

The undertaker’s man
had a corked thigh
from footy. But

the show must go on,
etcetera.  Let us
speak in the present tense.
(Now is a loaded word.)

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Hottest year on record: the Climate Council


New global heat data released overnight revealed that 2015 shattered records, with the average temperature across the entire planet 0.90˚C above the 20th century average. It was also the single biggest yearly jump in temperature records. The sheer number of records broken in 2015 is staggering and is more clear evidence of a climate on steroids.

To coincide with the release of the latest data, we’ve released an important new report, Hottest Year on Record (Again)It shows that the extreme heat is being driven by climate change, and exacerbating bushfire conditions in the USA and Australia, and bleaching delicate coral reefs the world over.

While you and I are well aware that heat records are being broken with alarming regularity, its so important that a much wider group of Australians understand that climate change is affecting us all today. Can you share it to get even more people talking about climate change?

The climate is sending us very clear warning signs and Australia is one of the most vulnerable countries to the impacts of climate change. Despite this, we are at the bottom of the list of OECD countries in terms of our emission reduction pledges - and we are struggling to meet even this weak level of ambition.

Our emissions are going up and Australia’s renewable energy industry is now stagnant after the Renewable Energy Target was cut last year.

Protecting Australians from worsening extreme weather events and doing our part in the global effort to bring climate change under control, requires a clear national plan for reducing emissions rapidly and transitioning to a low-carbon economy.
We’ll email you again shortly with our plans for more ground breaking research in 2016, but for now have a read of the Hottest Year on Record (Again) report and please, share it widely amongst your networks.
Thanks so much for getting the facts out there, and for your continued support of The Climate Council.

Amanda McKenzie
CEO, The Climate Council

A 9th Planet

Learn about the 9th Planet in our solar system ...

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Lloyd Rees: Painting with Pencil exhibition

Evening, Waverton 1932. Private collection, courtesy Richard Nagy Ltd.
Evening, Waverton, 1932. Private collection, courtesy Richard Nagy Ltd. Illustration: Supplied/Courtesy Richard Nagy Ltd
Lloyd Rees: Painting with Pencil 1930-36 runs from 12 December 2015 until 10 April 2016 at the Museum of Sydney, at the corner of Bridge and Phillip Sts, Sydney, on the site of the first Government House. The exhibition is free with general museum admission: Adult $10, Concession/Child (under 15) $5.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Australian Colonial Poetics (1796-1945)


    Australian Colonial Poetics (1796-1945)

hi all

i have recently published a book on australian colonial poetics (1796-1945) – it revisits a range of texts that now look experimental in various ways – or at least can be read through the poetics of the page etc

please order for your library if interested

if you would like a personal copy, email me for a discount form


Michael Farrell

WESTERLY 61.1 Open for Submissions Now

We have now opened submissions online for our next issue, which will take up the theme of renewal in Indigenous writing and culture. The issue will be guest edited by Stephen Kinnane.
Indigenous issues in Western Australia have become prominent nationally and internationally in recent years, often focused on many of the significant challenges to Indigenous cultural, social, political, heritage and economic realities. Occurring in parallel with these challenges has been a growth in creative cultural output in the areas of art, media, history, literature, language and law. This issue’s theme of renewal looks to enable Indigenous and non-Indigenous authors to speak to these changes through creative writing, poetry, literary non-fiction, art and multimedia.
Submission to this issue is open to all Australian authors, with particular focus on Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander authors, across all literary forms.
We are seeking essays (max. 5,000 words), creative non-fiction (max. 3,500 words), fiction (max. 3,500 words) and poetry (max. five per submission, max. 50 lines per poem). Photo essays and pitches for short reviews will also be accepted, (please contact Dr. Catherine Noske). We encourage all authors submitting to familiarise themselves with Westerly and its contents prior to doing so. Authors will be paid for published work.
Please submit online, at
Submission closes on March 31st, 2016.
For all further enquiries, please contact

Friday, January 15, 2016

Cool Morning

eating breakfast late
I look out the window

and see where
I should rake but

black ants cover
the handle on everything

words walking
that can sting and blister

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Hats (for Mikaela) poem #14

Ah, Mikaela, I'm a short man
of many hats - Hopalong Cassidy
down the sandy laneways
a six-gun on each hip
after the Saturday matinee -
my Mother would wait
until I was asleep
to take it off.

Later, an army beret
brought home from
NCO camp and dyed
bongo-player black...
Day-o, day-ay-o 
daylight come
and I wanna go home!

Top-hat and silk scarf
dancing on the beach
at dawn, cuddling
a washed-up dolphin ...

Sunhat in the outer
at Test cricket -
same hat as I spread
hay in the garden,
temperature rising.

Ah, all the years
of birthday hats
and Christmas hats
and hair nets for
operating theatres.

A man wears many hats
in just one life time -
this one dies bald headed.

Issa Haiku

in the footprints
of the warrior...

Issa 1803

tsuwamono ga ashi no ato ari keshi no hana

An anti-war poem? Certainly, Issa feels compassion for the fragile flowers trampled by the soldier. The symbolism is heavy. This haiku has the prescript, "North Wind" (haifû), which the editors of Issa zenshû describe as an allusion to an old poem; Issa zenshû (Nagano: Shinano Mainichi Shimbunsha, 1976-79) 2.141, note 6. Shinji Ogawa believes that Issa might also be echoing Bashô's haiku in Oku no hosomichi ("Narrow Road to the Far Provinces"): "summer grasses.../ all that remains/ of warriors' dreams."

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

OVERLAND invites Submissions

Overland is seeking un-/anti-/dis-Australian short stories for a special online fiction issue to be published in April this year.
This edition will be edited by Ben Walter, who says:
'I will be looking to publish stories that embrace a distinctive style or voice, that are not terrified of adornment or a little pizzazz. Wordplay. Humour. Experimental forms, non-linear structures, fragmented sentences, abstractions. Anything, just as long as it doesn’t sound like the winner of a moderately prestigious competition.'
Entries for this special issue close 11.59pm, Sunday 31 January 2016.

Sarah Howe wins TSEliot Prize

A new voice who judges say “will change British poetry”, has won the TS Eliot poetry prize. Sarah Howe, a fellow at Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute, was awarded the £20,000 prize for Loop of Jade, which explores her dual British and Chinese heritage.

Howe’s work – the first debut poetry collection to win the British prize since it was inaugurated in 1993 – triumphed over a particularly strong shortlist, which featured some of poetry’s biggest names, including Don Paterson, Claudia Rankine, Sean O’Brien and Les Murray.
Pascale Petit, the poet who chaired the panel of judges, said that 32-year-old Howe’s work was “absolutely amazing” and that her experimentations with form would “change British poetry”.
“She is exploring the situation of women in China, but she doesn’t do it just like that; she does it in a very erudite and dense, rich, imagistic way,” she said.

Especially impressive were Howe’s different and daring forms of poetry, and her powerful use of blank space, said Petit.

from Academy of American Poets

The Betsy Hotel in Miami

Laughlin and Marshall Prizes
Now Open

We’ve just begun accepting submissions for the $25,000 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize, given for the most outstanding book of poetry published in the United States in the previous year, and our second-book prize, the $5,000 James Laughlin Award, which includes a weeklong residency at Miami’s Betsy Hotel. Translators, don’t forget to submit to the $1,000 Harold Morton Landon Translation Award or the $10,000 Raiziss/de Palchi Book Prize. Deadline: February 15.

Friday, January 08, 2016

At Source - poem 8

The truck comes rumbling
up the street, beneath
large leafy street trees

and turns language
on its head, wheelie
after wheelie.

Here we see
the recycling of
commercial language,

comics, homework,
cryptic crosswords,
poetry drafts, abandoned

short stories,
daily news (local,
national, international)

sports news,
war news, pre-
scriptions, TV

medicine packets -
all together now

in a dump truck
off to Oxford for
the Dons' assessment.


Calling literary, film, music, theatre and visual arts critics, students and other interested parties!
As part of the effort to keep Rochford Street Review afloat I am looking to bring on board some associate editors to help with the day to day running of the journal and to help, if possible, take it to the next level. I also have a number of projects outside of RSR which I need to devote some time to.
I see the associate editors assisting in:
  • identifying books, exhibitions, films, theatre and other events to be covered and assisting in lining up reviewers. While I have been able to cover books to an almost adequate level our coverage of other areas of the arts has been patchy and a lot of work that deserved to be covered has been missed.
  • Assisting in the editing, markup and publishing of reviews and articles. Rochford Street Review uses Word Press so it is not necessary to have HTML skills (though it doesn't hurt) and I can walk you through the process of creating and publishing reviews.
  • It would be great to have someone concentrating on fund-raising and advertising. While we currently bring in a small amount of cash through donations and supporting subscriptions, it isn't enough to cover day to day running costs such as Word Press fees, postage and continuing to offer a token payment to reviewers. Any extra funds raised through targeted advertising or other strategies would help us to continue and maybe increase the amount we can pay to writers.
  • Being based in Sydney it is difficult to avoid being Sydney-centric to a point. It would be great to have people based around Australia and internationally to ensure the journal has better coverage.
Given the lack of funding available to the journal these positions will not be paid positions, though any reviews or articles produced would, of course, attract the same token payment as other reviewers.
If you are interested in becoming involved please contact me - contact details are available at

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Issa Haiku

goose at the gate
standing on one leg...
deep meditation

Issa - 1819


kado no kari kata ashi tatte shian kana


Posted by: David Gerard <>

Monday, January 04, 2016


What ingredients mix well for a good poem?

To whip up a froth I open Windows, pour myself

a coffee, and listen to jazz on the player.

A little spice more. Her bra hangs on the door,

all lace and silk. Super realism catches in my throat

– it is a Monk turn of phrase, the same old 88

but sung so many ways! We have tongues and talk

in 26 character clusters, rhythm section

from our hearts to the roof of our mouth.

Love and life and death – themes of our daily bred.

- Andrew Burke

Sunday, January 03, 2016

Saturday, January 02, 2016

Peter Goldsworthy reviewed by Geoff Page


The Rise of the machines and Other Love Poems By Peter Goldsworthy
Best known for his novels (Maestro, Wish, Three Dog Night, among others), Goldsworthy is also a writer of short fiction (most recently, Gravel) and libretti (Batavia and Summer of the Seventeenth Doll). He has also for many years balanced a morning career as a writer with an afternoon one as a GP. It's vital to remember, too, that since Readings from Ecclesiastes(1982) Goldsworthy has also been a poet – a witty and often affecting one.

The Rise of the Machines and Other Love Poems, a typically mock-laborious and ironic title, contains, according to its author, "all the poems I've completed (if that's ever possible) since my last [collection] was published way back in 2001".

Fourteen years is a long time between drinks and it's good to report that, in nearly all cases, the interval spent with libretti and fiction (and doctoring) has done nothing to blunt Goldsworthy's characteristic cleverness and his countervailing ability to move people – even as those same readers are smiling (or laughing out loud) in recognition of their own foibles and  misadventures.