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John Jenkins

John Jenkins reviews ‘Subterranean Radio Songs’ by Joel Deane and ‘Suburban Anatomy’ by Penelope Layland

February 2006, no. 278 01 February 2006
Good writing can take many forms, and I have often wished for a greater mutual appreciation, between poets and journalists, of the fine things with words that both are able to do. Joel Deane and Penelope Layland, former journalists, bring well-honed skills to their first volumes. (Deane is currently the speechwriter for the premier of Victoria, Steve Bracks.) In their work we find much clarity and ... (read more)

John Jenkins reviews 'Nebuchadnezzar' by Shelton Lea and 'Poetileptic' by Mal McKimmie

October 2006, no. 285 01 October 2006
Nebuchadnezzar is Shelton Lea’s ninth and last book. Sadly, this colourful poet, a well-loved stalwart on the Melbourne reading circuit, died of cancer in May 2006, shortly after its publication. The book begins by surveying a ‘land of fences and diatribes’ (‘1988’). It describes the inhabitants of Koori streets: ‘old men with no tomorrows / who rock on broken chairs / and stare at a ... (read more)