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Showing posts from July, 2004
Stayed up last night, late, to watch the finish of le tour de France. A bit more interesting than last year - the finish, that is, not the overall result.

We'd just got off the plane from Melbourne around 9pm and ought to have gone to bed early but there we were at 2 in the morning, slightly bug-eyed and a school day ahead.

more ek-phrasing

I'm going to be doing some more ekphrasis stuff with the Diverse poets in a couple of weeks. This time we're responding to paintings in Australian Surrealism: The Agapitos/ Wilson Collection which is currently at the S.H. Ervin Gallery on Observatory Hill. The exhibition is now in its last weeks. We are reading on the final Sunday, 8 August at 3pm. The reading is free (but you have to pay $8 for exhibition entry) and will feature four of us: Marcelle Freiman, Carolyne Bruyn, Robert Kennedy and myself.

I spent last Saturday afternoon there, walking around, making notes, having a coffee. As well as paintings by obvious contenders such as James Gleeson or Albert Tucker there were a couple of Jeffrey Smart pictures, a Joy Hester and two German artists who were interned in Australia during World War II. Worth a look before it closes.

Meandering leads to perfection.
- Lao Tzu



after hours diner

darkness, tofu, peppermint, storm
gone, fresh, slippy, anxious
each after each in the slick

go-light, smok-o, hang-out, thought-full
swishy, hissing, wooshy, brrring
each along each in the drift

I'm glad my house didn't blow over
I'm sad we'll never see snow

darkness fresh, go-light anxious
slippy, swishy, peppermint drift




double feature in melbourne

Many thanks to Michael Farrell for organising this double feature. (Margaret and David both give it five stars.)

Double Poetry Feature: 2 Launches

Poetry International 7/8, to be launched by John Mateer, featuring readings by Martin Harrison, one of the issue’s editors.
Struggle and Radiance, a chapbook by Sydney poet Jill Jones and published by Irish press, Wild Honey, to be launched by Michael Farrell.

Venue: Collected Works Bookshop, First Floor Nicholas Bldg, 37 Swanston St, Melbourne
Time: Thursday 22 July, 5.30 for 6pm start
Free/ All welcome / Light refreshments

Further details of publications and writers follow.

Poetry International: double edition 7/8

A world selection of recent poetry in English, the current double edition of the Californian journal Poetry International (7/8) takes the idea of guest editing to dizzying heights. English language poets from Africa, the US, Canada, South East Asia, the Caribbean, the UK join company with a selection of contemporary Australian poet…

rain

It is finally raining in Sydney. It hasn't been a lot of rain but over the last few days the gardens are drinking, at least. Maybe it is because rain can be rare here that it gets into my lines, the wish for that smell and splash which gets sounded out in words. These are often my lyric moments, the material evidence of the weather, how air touches you, heat and cold inside and outside.



and again ...

Walking around
                an early spring garden--
going nowhere.


-   Kyoshi

walking again

'The Great Frost'
or The art of walking the streets of London

O roving muse, recall that wonderous year,
When winter reigned in bleak Britannia's air;
When hoary Thames, with frosted osiers crowned,
Was three long moons in icy fetters bound.
The waterman, forlorn along the shore,
Pensive reclines upon his useless oar,
Sees harnessed steeds desert the stony town,
And wander roads unstable, not their own;
Wheels o'er the hardened waters smoothly glide,
And rase with whitenened tracks the slippery tide.
Here the fat cook piles high the blazing fire,
And scarce the spit can turn the steer entire.
Booths sudden hide the Thames, long streets appear,
And numerous games proclaim the crowded fair.


John Gay (1685 - 1732)


I thought it was about time to have some more walking along The Street. And as I had been walking in London recently, this one seemed a good idea.



blues power

T. Bone Walker singing 'Stormy Monday'. How cool is that. 'Lord have mercy! Crazy 'bout my baby.' And Little Willie John singing 'Fever'. I don't have the blues, but the blues just is. A sunny day, still no rain. 'I Can't Quit you, Baby'.

Carl Rakosi is still reading

Recordings of the late Carl Rakosi reading ten of his poems are available in downloadable MP3 format:
The poems are:

1. Love America, Uncle Sam Needs You
2. Go Preach Christ
3. The Country Singer
4. Captain Paterson
5. from Three Cheers for the Star Spangled Banner: A Silent Movie
6. How to be with a Rock
7. Oh Sestina
8. from The Old Poet's Tale
9. To a Collie Pup
10. In What Sense I am I

These recordings of Carl Rakosi's poems have been made available as part of the PENNsound project.

[This information via James Finnegan from Al Filreis.]



Annette and Anne's exhibition, Shadow Light Texture, was successfully opened last night in Camperdown, Sydney. The Chrissie Cotter Hall is a long narrow sixties space which works well as a gallery. But it was very cold until the crowds arrived. New faces, old friends. I made a speech which, inevitably included poetry. One of Anne's photos takes its title, Abandoned Moon, from a line in one of Neruda's poems (no 11 of the 20 Love Poems). Everyone was talking about the pictures on the wall as well as the usual small talk. Talking a lot about the pictures. In my speech I talked about a new look at modernism. One of Annette's influences is Aaron Siskind, abstract expressionism and all that. Is modernism coming back?

Anyway, if you are interested in their work, they both have websites:
Annette Willis
Anne Lynam

I
go low
as grey light

distance
tears me
from my head

sky
dances sun
so slow now

tunnels
steer me
into the cold

I
go now
where words tear

tired
song slapped
against sound catchers

resistance
moves me
into long voice

night
blurs lines
against open gates

I
go now
into home light

threaded
poured ached
gone and open



- a hay(na)ku written recently for the snapshots project.