In his luminous paean to poetry, modestly titled How to Read a Poem, Edward Hirsch writes that ‘poetry is made of metaphor’. This lucid statement is beautiful enough, but as a poet, Hirsch continues, making music, elaborating, forever taking the idea onwards, upwards and outwards, with poetry’s relentless energy: ‘It is a collision,’ he writes, ... More
ABR: Which critics most impress you?
Some of Australia’s best writers are also reviewers. I always enjoy the beautifully crafted and perceptive work of Drusilla Modjeska, Mireille Juchau, James Brad More
Originally published in German, Albrecht Dümling’s The Vanished Musicians: Jewish refugees in Australia More
by the river evokes the textures of a small Australian town in 1962 through lean episodic poems that drift along gently until moments of intensity break their banks. Through a lei More
For Pasha Ivanov, memory is 'a warped wound, with a welt or bruise that had arrived inexplicably late'. As the son of political dissidents in Moscow during Brezhnev's ...More
Two headlines, a day apart, evoke the confusion surrounding the fate of the Titanic in April 1912. New York's Evening Sun reported, 'ALL SAVED FROM TITANIC AFTER COLLISION'. Twenty-four hours later, The Boston Daily Globe added: 'TITANIC SINKS, 1500 DIE.' From there, the sinking of the 'unsinkable' Titanic has been the subject of ... More
Prismatic and dynamic, Australian Book Review's States of Poetry anthologies are about refraction as well as brilliance, shade and trace as much as what is lit. If anthologies generate disagreement, it is because of an illusion that they set or express the fixed amidst a mobile and vibrant set of practices. The recurring, multifarious nature of States of Po ... More
The writer is a conductor, opines the 'vaguely handsome, intensely laconic' cowpoke who speaks to Patti Smith as she lingers at 'the frame of a dream'. His words shape Smith's days. 'It's not so easy writing about nothing,' this companion tells her, and she scratches these words over and over onto a wall in her home with a chunk of red chalk.
Writing about n ... More
Jennifer Maiden's The Fox Petition: New Poems (Giramondo) conjures foxes 'whose eyes were ghosts with pity' and foxes of language that transform the world's headlinesMore