In this episode of Australian Book Review's States of Poetry podcast, MTC Cronin reads 'Little Track', 'The Grass is Full', and 'The Correct Way' which feature in the 2016 QLD anthology.

 

Little Track

Time falls out
of your house

and onto a slab
of lucerne which

the cows eat as
they wander away

from the orchard's
long flowing hour.

Sweet and full
of wild honey

is the flower
is the bird.

Part of your love
is timeless enough

says the little track
left by ants.

MTC Cronin

The Grass is Full

Moon is a paper lamp
burning all night.

The grass
is full of shadows.

Hardly room in here
with the cupboard's coat.

Small broken windows
open dream's row.

The wild birds
all leave my mind at once –

mouth banging shut
in the dark.

'The grass is full
of blue free stars.'

The universe just means
nothing gets left out. 

MTC Cronin

The Correct Way

The correct way to drink from a broken cup.
To welcome both dark and light into your house.
To imagine tomorrow.
To pick verbena and red clover.
On the path where nothing will grow.

The correct way to tend the frozen.
To take their sweet throats and swim down into their livers.
To disembowel without touching.
To do what is at stake.
To move from cage to cage.

The correct way to say only some things worth saying.
To recognize the world's mark.
(The shape of conception.)
To feed an apple.
To bruise.

The correct way to close your lips.
To keep a promise.
To remember.
And then, to die in a room.
Or out in the open.

MTC Cronin

'Little Track', 'The Grass is Full' and 'The Correct Way' appears in States of Poetry - QLD. You can learn more about States of Poetry and read the full anthologies here.

Read MTC Cronin's biography in 'States of Poetry - QLD'

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  • Custom Article Title States of Poetry 2016 QLD Podcast | 'Little Track', 'The Grass is Full', and 'The Correct Way' by MTC Cronin
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poems
  • Custom Highlight Text

    In this episode of Australian Book Review's States of Poetry podcast, MTC Cronin reads 'Little Track', 'The Grass is Full', and 'The Correct Way' which feature in the 2016 QLD anthology.

In this episode of Australian Book Review's States of Poetry podcast, MTC Cronin reads 'Above Us' and 'The World's Yard' which feature in the 2016 QLD anthology.

 

Above Us

Above us we hear the windmill yelping, circling like a trapped
dog while the house sits like a black skull on the hill. Above us
the tombs are rising from their rest and travelling along the
roads beneath trees turning sourly. Above us the wind flings
uncountable seed into the dignified light tossed through the
depths by a green moon rolling over and over in the shifting
lens of the waves. Above us nakedness stretches forever
against danger, ravishment and smoke. When we wake our
lives are on fire. Above us only our sleepy souls drifting like
reeds catching the air.

 

The World's Yard

The correct way to drink from a broken cup.
To welcome both dark and light into your house.
To imagine tomorrow.
To pick verbena and red clover.
On the path where nothing will grow.

The correct way to tend the frozen.
To take their sweet throats and swim down into their livers.
To disembowel without touching.
To do what is at stake.
To move from cage to cage.

The correct way to say only some things worth saying.
To recognize the world's mark.
(The shape of conception.)
To feed an apple.
To bruise.

The correct way to close your lips.
To keep a promise.
To remember.
And then, to die in a room.
Or out in the open.

MTC Cronin

'Above Us' and 'The World's Yard' appears in States of Poetry - QLD. You can learn more about States of Poetry and read the full anthologies here.

Read MTC Cronin's biography in 'States of Poetry - QLD'

Additional Info

  • Free Article Yes
  • Custom Article Title States of Poetry 2016 QLD Podcast | 'Above Us' and 'The World's Yard' by MTC Cronin
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poems
  • Custom Highlight Text

    In this episode of Australian Book Review's States of Poetry podcast, MTC Cronin reads 'Above Us' and 'The World's Yard' which feature in the 2016 QLD anthology.

Right at the back of the world's yard I am sitting. I have nothing.
I had a stone but lent it to the poet to put in his shoe. No sooner
did he turn into a slim golden feather that flew straight to the
sun that fed the snakes new skins. It could as easily have
resulted in ripe figs resting in baskets or unruly persimmon
trees twirling in fogged mountains. Regardless, I have nothing. I
had a stone but it was just an essay I wrote once about staying
with one's shadow.

MTC Cronin

Recording

'The World's Yard' begins at 1:37

Additional Info

  • Free Article Yes
  • Custom Article Title 'The World's Yard' by MTC Cronin | States of Poetry Queensland - Series One
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poems

Time falls out
of your house

and onto a slab
of lucerne which

the cows eat as
they wander away

from the orchard's
long flowing hour.

Sweet and full
of wild honey

is the flower
is the bird.

Part of your love
is timeless enough

says the little track
left by ants.

MTC Cronin


Recording

'Little Track' begins at 0:45

Additional Info

  • Free Article Yes
  • Custom Article Title 'Little Track' by MTC Cronin | States of Poetry Queensland - Series One
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poems

Moon is a paper lamp
burning all night.

The grass
is full of shadows.

Hardly room in here
with the cupboard's coat.

Small broken windows
open dream's row.

The wild birds
all leave my mind at once –

mouth banging shut
in the dark.

'The grass is full
of blue free stars.'

The universe just means
nothing gets left out. 

MTC Cronin


Recording

'The Grass is Full' begins at 1:11

Additional Info

  • Free Article Yes
  • Custom Article Title 'The Grass is Full by MTC Cronin | States of Poetry Queensland - Series One
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poems

Above us we hear the windmill yelping, circling like a trapped
dog while the house sits like a black skull on the hill. Above us
the tombs are rising from their rest and travelling along the
roads beneath trees turning sourly. Above us the wind flings
uncountable seed into the dignified light tossed through the
depths by a green moon rolling over and over in the shifting
lens of the waves. Above us nakedness stretches forever
against danger, ravishment and smoke. When we wake our
lives are on fire. Above us only our sleepy souls drifting like
reeds catching the air.

MTC Cronin

Recording

'Above Us' begins at 0:45

Additional Info

  • Free Article Yes
  • Custom Article Title 'Above Us' by MTC Cronin | States of Poetry Queensland - Series One
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poems

The correct way to drink from a broken cup.
To welcome both dark and light into your house.
To imagine tomorrow.
To pick verbena and red clover.
On the path where nothing will grow.

The correct way to tend the frozen.
To take their sweet throats and swim down into their livers.
To disembowel without touching.
To do what is at stake.
To move from cage to cage.

The correct way to say only some things worth saying.
To recognize the world's mark.
(The shape of conception.)
To feed an apple.
To bruise.

The correct way to close your lips.
To keep a promise.
To remember.
And then, to die in a room.
Or out in the open.

MTC Cronin


Recording

'The Correct Way' begins at 1:44

Additional Info

  • Free Article Yes
  • Custom Article Title 'The Correct Way' by MTC Cronin | States of Poetry Queensland - Series One
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poems

MTC 8FEB07 143 smaller

MTC Cronin has published twenty books (poetry, prose poems, and essays) including a collection jointly written with the Australian poet, Peter Boyle. Her work has won and been shortlisted for many major literary awards, both internationally and in her native Australia. Several of her books have appeared in translation: The Ridiculous Shape of Longing (Macedonian) and her 2001 book, Talking to Neruda's Questions, which has been translated into Spanish, Italian, and Swedish. A French translation by Anne Ortiz Talvaz of her 2001 book, Bestseller (Vagabond Press, Sydney), will be published in France in 2019 (Editions de l'Amandier, Paris). Recent collections include In Possession of Loss (Shearsman Books, 2014) and The Law of Poetry (Puncher & Wattmann, 2015), the latter of which was written over two decades.

States of Poetry

'Little Track'

'The Grass is Full'

'The Correct Way'

'Above Us'

' The World's yard'

Recordings

#50 States of Poetry 2016 QLD Podcast | 'Little Track', 'The Grass is Full', and 'The Correct Way' by MTC Cronin

#51 States of Poetry 2016 QLD Podcast | 'Above Us' and 'The Worlds Yard' by MTC Cronin

Further reading and links

Peter Kenneally reviews The Law of Poetry in the December 2015 issue of Australian Book Review

MTC Cronin interview on ABC Radio National's Earshot program

Author page on Red Room Company website

Author page on Poetry Library website

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  • Custom Article Title About MTC Cronin | States of Poetry Queensland - Series One
  • Contents Category States of Poetry - Poets
  • Custom Highlight Text MTC Cronin has published twenty books (poetry, prose poems, and essays) including a collection jointly written with the Australian poet, Peter Boyle. Her work has won and been shortlisted for many major literary awards, both internationally and in her native Australia.

With her first book, Zoetrope, in 1995, MTC Cronin announced herself as a very particular force in Australian poetry. It was not just that her début was so much more immediately arresting than most poets' first outings, but also that it had real authority. This authority, coming from force of intellect and a kind of absolutist, almost inscribed imagination, has marked her work through the years, along with an appreciation for the enabling constraint and for critical rigour. Coming from a legal background through academia, she has arrived, with The Law of Poetry (Puncher & Wattmann, $29.95, 255 pp, 9781922186614) at an effortlessly monumental assemblage of poetic 'laws'.

MTC Cronin The Law of Poetry - colourThe Law of Poetry by MTC Cronin (Puncher and Wattman)

Cronin hands down laws for every conceivable instance where poetry attempts to accommodate the world. 'The Law of Balance', for instance, says that 'In poetry, evening and twilight balance perfectly. / Mystery balances with any word you choose to weigh it against. / Poetry, however, puts the whole world out of whack. / When you read it you drift up or down / while everything goes in the opposite direction.' Elsewhere, there are more abstract formulations, or poems that summon up Brecht's 'Radio Poem' ('Little Law without redemption / Taking a loan to start a new civilization'), among other European ghosts, and generally refuse the great Australian incertitude. It is more an annotation of possible laws that we might adhere to if we knew them, than a corpus of law, and bears the same relation to law that Philip Salom's Alterworld bears to reality, with the same brio. This is poetry as cattle prod, and a welcome shock it is.

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  • Custom Article Title Peter Kenneally reviews 'The Law of Poetry' by MTC Cronin, 'The Ladder' by Simon West, 'Jam Sticky Vision' by Luke Beesley, 'Immune Systems' by Andy Jackson, and 'The Hour of Silvered Mullet' by Jean Kent
  • Contents Category Poetry