‘Tell me about it: you can trust me. I’m a writer.’ This ‘cautionary joke’ – one of few in this sober volume – cited in an essay by Frank Moorhouse, could be an epigraph for the latest Westerly. Editors Bird and Hughes-d’Aeth asked a selection of writers to share their thoughts on the ethics of writing. The ensuing essays include depictions of the past and of family in non-fiction, and play off each other interestingly. Kim Scott, Tiffany Shellam, and Clint Bracknell reflect on the Indigenous experience of colonisation. Scott offers a letter of sorts to an unnamed prison inmate, the result characteristically self-reflexive. Shellam delves into the archives to deconstruct the ‘friendly frontier’ trope, and Blaze Kwaymullina, in a metaphorically laboured appropriation of an appropriation, builds poems from the rearranged words of colonial archival documents.
Delys Bird and Tony Hughes-d’Aeth (eds): Westerly Vol. 57, No. 2
Westerly Vol. 57, No. 2
edited by Delys Bird and Tony Hughes-d’Aeth
Westerly Centre, $29.95 pb, 193 pp, 9780987318015
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Anthony Lynch lives on the Bellarine Peninsula, Victoria, where he writes poetry, fiction, and reviews. His work has appeared in The Age, The Best Australian Poems, Island, and Southerly. His short story collection Redfin (2007) was shortlisted for the Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards. His poetry collection Night Train was published in late 2011 by Clouds of Magellan. He is publisher at the independent publishing house Whitmore Press and an editor at Deakin University.
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