Outcrop: Radical Australian Poetry of Land
Black Rider Press, $24.99 pb, 243 pp, 9781628408942
Radical histories often balance political ideas and actions on a see-saw of progressive liberal ideology on the one hand, and a thumbs-down rejection of the ‘old guard’ on the other – a challenge to perceived obsolete, lazy, or contaminated ways of seeing, doing, or being. When I encountered the word ‘radical’ in the title of Outcrop, its rich political history of associations hovered about the edges of my reading. I kept asking myself: Is this radical? Why is this radical? Issues of globalisation, environmental degradation, and catastrophic weather events increasingly dominate public discourse, and it is of course timely to publish such a book, which, according to Corey Wakeling’s introduction, ‘believes in not only poetry’s potential for critique and dissent, but too the possibility of recuperation and efflorescence of land’s multiplicity in a theatre of language’.