David Malouf

Twenty-five or thirty years ago, when it was still fashionable to speak of the Great Australian Emptiness, we took this image of the geographical dead heart of Australia as implying a cultural emptiness as well, a suggestion that too little had happened or been made here to give the mind, the civilised mind, anything to hang on to, identify with or make its own.

... (read more)

Four in the morning. Stumbling back
to bed, the softness
of my pillow in the spread
of my fingers assumes
again, after so long, the still longed for
round of your head.

... (read more)

For more than a decade the world has waited, patiently or disbelievingly, for a second book from Nam Le, author of The Boat (2008), a collection of seven tales that won the young Australian author acclaim throughout the world. Finally, it has arrived. A book-length essay running to about 15,000 words ...

... (read more)

It is a curious thing, and not a little moving, to see writers celebrated for their work in other genres turn in later life with renewed vigour to poetry. David Malouf, like Clive James, has avowed a desire for poetry now, as the main form of writing his expression wants to take. Certainly, its brevity has a part in this ...

... (read more)

Letters to the Editor: Reflections on Nam Le, David Malouf, J.M. Coetzee, and the true origin of the curate's egg ...

... (read more)

Plenty of novelists begin life as poets. Few, though, have managed to maintain their status as poet–novelists quite so impressively as David Malouf. But even Malouf, in his ‘middle period’, more or less dropped poetry for his ‘big’ novels ...

... (read more)

News from the the Editor's Desk in the August issue of Australian Book Review.

... (read more)

Porter Prize winner

Amanda Joy, from Western Australia, was named overall winner of the Peter Porter Poetry Prize at a Boyd ceremony on 9 March. Her poem is entitled 'Tailings'. All five shortlisted poets introduced and read their poems – two of them disembodiedly (

Today in Sunday weather grevillia leaves
in turmoil, no evident breeze. A sugar hit. A honey
-eater, upside down at tilt and tumble.

The body also in Sunday mode. The mind
idling on automatic with no need
to be occupied or coloured, having come at last

to the end of a long apprenticeship in learning to leave
well alone. No empire to account to. No
a ...

A soft October morning,
adagio sostenuto. Some part
of me is still delayed

in sleep. It is one with
night, with daylight
stars, moths that fumble

at a window pane, bewildered
that this tract of sky,
like no other, will not yield.

The coffee cup, double espresso,
is deeper than it looks.
Each sip I take

a dark reaffirmation. ...

Page 1 of 4