This one is via link to Not Very Quiet, an online journal of women’s poetry. This edition, the second, was guest edited by Anita Patel, and the launch was held last night at Smiths Alternative here in Canberra. Many of the included poets were there to read their poems, along with the founding editors, Sandra Renew and Moya Pacey, and production editor Tikka Wilson.

Here is Anita Patel launching this issue, which is well worth a look.

Anita edit

This one is a Christmas poem, just published at Verity La.

The poem is about reugees. It’s important to remember those excluded and shunned all year, but it’s particularly pertinent to Christmas, when God took on the form of a child born in a stable. The outsider became the centre of the story.

There’s another poem at the site about climate change and specifically, the Great Barrier Reef. An enormous number of future refugees will be fleeing the effects of climate change. And destroying the lives of other species is inexcusable, too.

God bless us, every one! Have a wonderful Christmas.

 Onthemorningthomas1

This one is via link to the Thunderbolt Prize, where it was highly commended. It’s about a bike being hit by a car, so prepare for seasonal cheerfulness! The other poems are well worth a look, too. The winning poem is by Jenny Blackford.

bike stars

I also just had a poem published in Australian Poetry Journal, with a poem about work, and was a finalist in the New Millennium Monthly muse competition, on the subject of fear, but I’m going to hoard that poem for a while and get it published elsewhere. Those competitions are also well worth a look.

Australia is moving into Christmas shutdown mode as we speak. And by Australia I largely mean me…which is fairly arrogant, but there you go. I am not writing as much as usual, and drinking (even) more. Cheers.

Tuesday Poem: Cactus

November 6, 2017

Cactus

Spiky camel hump, buried in sand.
Alien artichoke, Martian’s lunch.
I’m told to admire your
‘architectural qualities’. As if
we build houses of needles,
like one of those three little pigs
gone crazy, his brain curling,
dizzy, to match pale gimlet tail.
What huffing
fire-mouthed dragon
could blow you down?
Crooked eyes only, crave cacti.

Yet, every few years, you explode
into a neon gown of Brazilian hues
pulsating, pink or gold, as at Mardi Gras.
When poor become princes,
and thin desert blooms.

PS Cottier

cactus

An ancient poem this one, if ten years qualifies as ancient.  My cactus just bloomed, hence my digging it (the poem) up.

***
I just had two poems published in issue 23 of Failed Haiku, which is a great name for a journal.  It refers to senryu, which are like haiku but quirkier. The home page is definitely worth a visit, for links to information about senryu, and so you can download the issues.  I won’t link to the PDF of issue 23 (November 2017) here, but it is easily accessed at the site. The editor, Mike Rehling, also makes some interesting comments about senryu that particularly caught his eye.

Tuesday poem: On editing

September 11, 2017

awaw2017.jpg

Irma Gold has written a thoughtful piece about writing her story ‘The Line’ that appears in this year’s Award Winning Australian Writing.

My poem in this book, which covers both prose and poetry, is three lines in length, although I did not write it as a ‘real’ haiku. It won a contest for a poem in 50 characters or less, which means that the emphasis was on what was not spoken as much as the words that appeared. Editing and writing become virtually inseparable when the poem is so short.

I took the ‘How Tweet It Is’ title of the Fellowship of Australian Writers’ contest literally and wrote a poem called ‘The Cat’s New Beard’ which is not in the least bird-friendly. It’s about a cat eating a bird. I won’t post it here, as the book just came out, and I can’t really post an extract of a tiny poem. But here’s another short poem about the process of editing a wee poem about a bird.

Plucking words
too many feathers —
bantam or robin?

Now a bantam is bigger than a robin, just as Batman is bigger than the Boy Wonder, so robin is probably the better option.

I am enjoying reading the book, which contains everything from evocative stories (Irma) to dead canaries (me). Why not purchase one? The editor is Pia Gaardboe.