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Travelling around writing

by Australian Book Review
May 1993, no. 150

An interview with Martin Flanagan.

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Fury by Maurilia Meehan

June 1993, no. 151

Metempsychosis is the transmigration of a soul at death into the body of another being. The plot of this novel turns neatly on an incident of metempsychosis. I don’t wish to explain what happens, because one of the charms of the book lies in that moment, and readers must be free to enjoy it.

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Ten years ago historical novels were an unwanted rarity in Australian children’s publishing. Instead, there was a vogue for time-slip novels where a contemporary kid went travelling back into the past, as though history would be too hard for younger readers to handle without some sort of tour guide.

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‘Lyrical Unification in Gambier’ a poem by John Kinsella

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‘Down with Beauty! Long Live Death!’, a poem by Geoff Page

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‘Praying with Christopher Smart’ a poem by Peter Steele

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'The Time Machine', a poem by Stephen Edgar ... (read more)
'Doo Town', a poem by Paul Kane ... (read more)

Early in Gail Jones’s novel Black Mirror (2002), an Australian artist dives into the Seine to retrieve a bundle that may contain a drowning baby. Before rising to the surface, she experiences a kind of epiphany in the face of possible death – ‘a willed dissolution, a corrupt fantasy of effacement’. Later she revisits the experience in dreams, swimming through a surrealist underworld of discarded bric-a-brac: plainly, a metaphor for dreaming itself, as an act of plunging into mental depths and searching for hidden treasures.

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'Coppers', a poem by Kevin Gillam ... (read more)