Poetry

In his polemical Introduction, Les Murray notes that Quadrant was founded sixty years ago by poet James McAuley, the ‘stern formalist’ who ensured that poetry occupied a prominent place in the magazine. Poetry has continued to be central to Quadrant, its profile not waning under Murray’s stewardship as ...

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This new book of Vivian Smith’s is really quite a surprise. If it were the case of any other poet approaching his eighties you might think of it as rather a grab bag, knocked together out of odds and ends. It is made up of an imaginary biography of ‘Ern Malley’; another set of sonnets, ‘Diary Without Dates' ...

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Kate Lilley: Ladylike

Rose Lucas
Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Rose Lucas

 

Ladylike
by Kate Lilley
UWA Publishing, $19.95 pb, 86 pp, 9781742584393

 

Like all good titles, Kate Lilley’s Ladylike offers the reader a coded and evocative entrée into her new collection. These poems are concerned with exposing and cr ...

Broadly speaking, there are two types of epitaphs: those formulated by loved ones to describe the living qualities of the interred; and those that would presume to speak from the grave. Writers, ever reluctant to pass up a blank page – even if it is a tombstone – are disproportionate constituents of the latter ...

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Alan Fish: The Keeper of Fish; and M.A. Carter: Keeping Carter

Cassandra Atherton
Friday, 20 April 2012

Philip Salom as Fisher King

Cassandra Atherton

 

The Keeper of Fish
by Alan Fish (edited by Philip Salom)
Puncher & Wattmann (Inbooks), $24 pb, 90 pp, 9781921450464

 

S.K. Kelen: Island Earth

Anthony Lynch
Friday, 20 April 2012

Anthony Lynch

 

Island Earth: New and Selected Poems
by S.K. Kelen
Brandl & Schlesinger, $29.95 pb, 335 pp, 9781876454173

 

‘Dark satanic mills won the day’, S.K. Kelen tells us in one of his strongest poems ...

John Leonard’s anthology of young Australian poets, showcasing the work of an exclusive septet, comes hot on the heels of Felicity Plunkett’s more accommodating Thirty Australian Poets (reviewed by Fiona Wright in the December 2011–January 2012 issue of ABR). Young Poets: An Australian Anthology ...

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The Welfare of My Enemy is an unusual experiment in narrative poetry. Taking as its theme ‘the disappeared’, it is a set of narratives, a kind of anthology that imaginatively documents the myriad ways in which (and the different reasons for which) people go ‘off the radar’ and end up as missing persons ...

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Mark Treddinick reviews 'Vishvarūpa' by Michelle Cahill

Mark Treddinick
Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Vishvarūpa, Michelle Cahill’s second collection, is a convocation of untouchables and deities – unbelieving, irreverent, and sardonic – each a proxy for an aspect of the poet’s (post-colonial) self; each a stand-in, even, for a moment in every human life.

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‘To choose the best, among many good,’ says Dr Johnson in his ‘Life of Cowley’, ‘is one of the most hazardous attempts of criticism.’ The truth of this maxim is borne out nicely in the controversy surrounding – or perhaps emanating from – Rita Dove’s new selection of twentieth-century American poetry ...

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