Showing posts from September, 2019

Considering a poetics of dwelling in Judith Wright

I just found an old essay, commissioned by an organisation but never published (slight grump), on the poetry of Judith Wright and, specifically, her Collected Poems. It's a bit overviewy, as that was the commission, however, considering that I'm thinking at the moment about domestic space, intimacy and ecopoetics, these few paragraphs seem to contain some useful reference points. So, here's the extract:
"If the poems in Judith Wright’s Collected Poems are approached in a way that does not seek to read Wright simply through themes of, for instance, landscape and nature or dub her as an activist poet or a lyric poet, solely, the poems can offer a broader field for exploration.
The poems of her later years, such as the rather spare poems reproduced from the book Alive, allow a focus on the primariness of the lived space, of dwelling and intimacy with non-human space and place. This is exemplified in the long poem sequence ‘Habitat’ in which the poet, among other things, ap…

'Energy' in a poem

Just a few ideas, well questions really, about energy or movement in a poem.
Certainly that can be directed through syntactical choices - paratactic, discontinuous, or hypotactic, continuous.
It may be how tense is used. Can simple present tense lead to a kind of flattening of the poem’s energy? Possibly, though I presume that may well be mitigated by other factors, including syntax.
What place is there for speculation in the poem via tense (subjunctive?), or mood (not grammatical mood so much as atmospherics), or aspect?
There is also the force of the prepositional, the way prepositions place and direct.
Does the poem rely more on monosyllabic (or close to) words or prefer the polysyllabic and depending on which, how the stresses then operate. Do polysyllabics clutter, or do monosyllabics become boring rhythmically? Again, other factors, such as syntax, enjambment, stanza will change these effects.
Then there is the way the poem might move between the continuous (not just syntactical but a…

An environment - a poem

What is an environment in poetry – maybe creating space for things to happen, even if that be small, let alone associative/expansive, or even rhapsodic, or taking in other 'data', big and small.
In doing this, I consider the spaces in the poem, the associative if you like, as wave forms, intersections created by words, phrases, iterations and reiterations as words double-back on themselves, as a mapping of territory, the sense of both looking close (the micro) and looking out to and beyond a horizon (the macro). The effects multiply and affect each other, there is a sharing of being.

‘The fast fold of fret lines’: Intimacy, ecopoetics, and the local

Spreading difference