Lisa Jacobson

Lisa Jacobson’s third book, South in the World, opens with ‘Several Ways to Fall Out of The Sky’, a poem composed of imperatives instructing the reader in the strange art of descent. Jacobson’s poem deliberately invokes Auden’s famous piece of ekphrasis about Brueghel’s Landscape with the Fall of Icarus, ‘Musée des Beaux Arts’, which concerns itself with the relativity of suffering. All tragedies, Auden suggests, are products of perspective: Icarus’s plummeting may be a source of anguish for Daedalus, but is a minor occasion for a passing ploughman. Jacobson challenges this divested notion of witness by engaging in acts of imaginative empathy, stepping beyond the poet’s localised purview into the broader historical sphere.

... (read more)

It is 2050 in Melbourne. The seas have risen, full of accidental genetic mixtures and cloned versions of extinct favourites, while the land is dried out and life is a tense combination of techno-affluence, terror, and normality ...

... (read more)

These six poetry titles represent the third series of New Poets to be published by Five Islands Press. Each title runs to exactly thirty two pages – no more, no less. It is, in a sense, a mini-collection, or a semi-collection, midway between a reading and a book. The series as a whole is therefore like a showcase of new talent – you applaud some of the poems, and get impatient with others, much as you do with the poets themselves. This is a good thing – it presents poetry as the provisional affair it really is, most of the time, for poet and reader alike.

... (read more)