We are the stories we tell. We need our stories: they make us feel real. Stories give to our personal experience the particular shapes and cohesiveness we call ‘self’. When we enter into new friendships, when we fall in love, we tell our stories. The closer we draw to people, the more of our stories we are willing to risk. ‘Risk’ is always a factor. If we fall out with our closest friends, ... (read more)
Lucy Frost taught literature at Latrobe University and the author of Convict Orphans (Allen & Unwin, 2023).
November 1997, no. 196 • 01 November 1997
Australia in the imagination of its first European mapmakers was a curious place where odd creatures dwelt. Now that a metropolitan culture emanates from cities to encircle the continent with farms, roads, towns, and nature reserves, the spaces marked ‘exotic’ have shifted. But they’re still here. I know, because I’ve recently moved from Melbourne to Tasmania. Why are you doing this? Asked ... (read more)
Ismini at sixteen, carefully putting together the surprise birthday dinner for her father, ponders the untranslatable realities of words: One morning on a hot wooden jetty her father had hauled a squid out of the flashing sea. Dripping, its bright mantle fading, it had shuddered and wheezed at her feet, blind in the white sun, as it died. Oh what is it, Baba? Kalamari. Mummy, Baba’s caught ... (read more)
The time is always four o’clock in the morning when Night Sister M. Shady (unregistered) is on duty at The Hospital of St Christopher and St Jude. The punctual milkman is swearing as he falls on the broken step, the elderly patients are having a water fight or an altercation or a game of cards. Whatever may or may not be going on, Mrs Shady will record with confidence ‘nothing abnormal to repo ... (read more)