A Formula for Glass
University of Queensland Press, 116 pp, $7.95 pb
Michael Sariban has provided us with a new and memorable collection of poetry. In 1984, the Queensland Community Press produced At the Institute for Total Recall, which met with an enthusiastic response.
A Formula for Glass is a poetry sequence that forms a loose narrative thread. It traces the poet’s journey back through his childhood, both through memory and physical visit to Berlin. The middle section is a series of meditations on themes ranging from ‘your reasons for leaving’ to ‘Justice and Sex’, to unfulfilled women who wait at home for their soldiers at war: ‘Girls growing into widows / while hanging out the washing’. The closing sequences record his grief over his wife’s early death.