Graeme Hetherington

Graeme Hetherington

Graeme Hetherington, born in 1937, grew up on the west coast of Tasmania before attending boarding school and the University of Tasmania in Hobart, where he became a lecturer in the Classics Department. Not finding any Hittites, Greeks or Romans in Australia, he went to Europe for a more substantial contact with them. Most of his adult life has been spent there, but he now lives back in Tasmania. He is the author of four books of poetry, and has another two coming out in 2017.

One of the themes of his work is disorientation à la Richard Mahoney!

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Avila' by Graeme Hetherington

States of Poetry Tasmania - Series One 22 February 2016
Avila   (1)  The badly wounded and the poorMove round the city with the sunAnd little else to keep them warm, While time softens cathedral stone,Plucks eagles bald and breaks the wingsOf St Teresa's doves in flight.   (2)  A fine day shows up broken teeth,Club feet, ten thumbs and squinting eyes,The signs of under-privileged genes.Such people built the city walls, Serve ... (read more)

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Upper Heights and Lower Depths' by Graeme Hetherington

States of Poetry Tasmania - Series One 22 February 2016
Upper Heights And Lower Depths   What heights remain beyond our reachWhen dog whistle and tuning fork,Straining to listen though we may, Sound notes pitched too high for our ear,Deserting us yearning to rise,Freed from the confines of our lives? Nor can we hear how far belowThe scales a crow's cawing might go,Summoning to a fathomless Black abyss, as Aeschylus inHis tragedies, at first m ... (read more)

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'For Bill Harwood' by Graeme Hetherington

States of Poetry Tasmania - Series One 22 February 2016
For Bill Harwood   A theorist of the purest kind,Your lectures had no human warmthAnd faded like a day-time moon.The crueller said 'cloud-cuckoo land' And loudly tapped their hollow heads.Some thought you clinically disposed,Contemptuous of eveythingExcept the symbols on a page, Myself included till you saidWith gravy running down your chin:'I love to lie curled up in bedAnd listen to the ... (read more)

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Learning to Know One's Place' by Graeme Hetherington

States of Poetry Tasmania - Series One 22 February 2016
Learning To Know One's Place (For Gwen Harwood And James McAuley)   'Hello Graeme, old love, it's Gwen,I'm sitting on a cloud too fineFor jealousy to let you see.But please believe your ears as I Exhort you not to bow to age,To keep tramping around in searchOf at least one poem that will beAs sure of fame as all mine are. There's still life in your Hell's Gate's, WestCoast of Tasmania be ... (read more)

States of Poetry 2016 - TAS | 'Bill and Gwen' by Graeme Hetherington

States of Poetry Tasmania - Series One 22 February 2016
Bill And Gwen In Swiftian mood, insisting thatThe human race would never learn,Was hopeless, doomed, Bill Harwood, pureLogician and philosopher,As well as spouse of poet Gwen, Proposed a universal banOn sex to end our sorry waysAnd brought our threesome's talk on howThe world was going to a haltOf the socially awkward kind. Then magically, as tension grew,As though specifically she knewThis imp ... (read more)