…it’s on Wednesday the 23rd July, 7.30pm at Don Bank House, 6 Napier St, North Sydney.

Hopefully my health will have improved by then, as I am currently sounding like a moth-eaten walrus with a two packets a day habit. Here I am looking a little dumpy:

bigstock-Walrus-family-haul-out-26072654

I will try and haul myself together over the next little while, and magically transform myself into a cultured creature who can read. North Sydney is not my usual part of Sydney; so it will be interesting geographically as well as offering an opportunity to meet more poets. I tend to stay in Glebe when I go to Sydney. Or Newtown.

The launch is being held alongside poetry readings organised by Danny Gardner, so there is a small cover charge for non-contributors.

Do come along, dear Sydney persons. Unfortunately, Tim Jones is poetically ensconced in New Zealand and will not be able to make it, but I’ll be there, as will David Reiter, the publisher.

SLS_Cov

Here is a link to the Facebook page with lovely photos of the previous launches, and you can navigate from there to a dedicated Sydney launch page, should you so desire.

Or better still, just come along.

Lift offs

June 11, 2014

earl_livings

Here is an image of Earl Livings reading his poem at the Melbourne launch of The Stars Like Sand: Australian Speculative Poetry. Thanks to Breanne Rodda from Interactive Publications for this photograph. I’ll be posting more images shortly.

Philip Salom launched the book at Collected Works, and about ten poets read.

Tomorrow is the Canberra launch, and after that, I’ll have a lengthier post about the launches. I’m looking forward to hearing what Kaaron Warren has to say.

My fellow editor, Tim Jones, is in Australia and has been cruelly attacked by kangaroo poo down on the south coast of NSW. I was not worried by the marsupial droppings, which obviously target visitors from New Zealand. Tim’s blog also has a brief piece on the first launch.

I am looking forward to the launch tomorrow, and to hearing more of the poems brought to life. We’ll be distributing contributors’ copies at the launch, and copies will be sent to other contributors after that. You can buy copies from the publisher or from Amazon.

Sean Williams is counting to three here.  Honestly.

Sean Williams is counting to three here. Honestly.

tanka and wine crop

What a lovely present for a launch speech! Yesterday it was about 36 degrees in Canberra and unusually steamy, and I gave my first launch speech for the pamphlet In Response to Magpies.  This was organised by Hazel Hall, Australian Poetry’s café poet at Biginelli’s café.

Hazel Hall

Hazel Hall

It went quite well, and the readings by the poets included in the collection were enjoyable. Here I am looking up in the air, as if there is an invisible magpie swooping:

magpie launch

Fortunately I am wearing my special invisible helmet

I am hoping to write up the speech for publication. The wine remains intact, as it is gin weather.

Last night I went to a poetry slam, co-organised by fellow Triptych poet J.C. Inman at The Front, and it was so steamy and hot we were all like pieces of tofu floating in a laksa. Here is a piece of poetic tofu, also known as J.C. Inman:

J.C. Inman(my phone was fainting from the heat)

J.C. Inman
(my phone was fainting from the heat)

I realised how exhausted I was when I read a poem before the slam and my hands were literally shaking. People must have thought I was a very sensitive flower, but that was not it at all. It was: half heat, half gin, half gym. So what? A mathematican I ain’t.

Canberra: freezing one day and Brisbane the next. If only I could afford a pankawallah.  Or another gin.

Now I’m off to be languid.  After the gym.

Silver-eyes and figs

Each bird a single note, played
between the heavy figs, swollen
breves in this flighted music,
swing accents in an airy score.
The eye does not dissect
any swift segue of feather,

rather the bird breeze shakes
the hand-leaves, palms turned away.
It is the movement we see, not
a display case specimen mounted,
spread eagled for our slower eyes.

To watch this quick-silver is to
turn away from focus, to become
silver-eyed ourselves, as the ruffled

feathers of the fig
breathe scent of bird.

This uncharacteristic poem appears in my first book, The Glass Violin, copies of which are still available from Ginninderra Press. (Scroll down this linked page to Cottier.) Annoyingly, the last two lines above should appear as a broken line, with the word ‘breathe’ under the word ‘fig’, but this broken line keeps being removed before I can post this entry, creating a lovely chunky effect. Sigh.

I still remember how nervous I was before the launch of that first book. Geoff Page did the launch speech.

And now I am doing the launch of a book for the first time on Friday. The book is called In response to magpies, and is a small pamphlet of nine poems dealing with this charismatic Australian bird. The idea is that it would make a wonderful alternative to a mere Christmas card. The authors are Denise Burton, Amelia Fielden, Hazel Hall, Norma Hayman, Kathy Kituai, Sandra McGahy, Fiona McIlroy, Sandra Renew and Jill Sutton.

golden eye, not silver

Details: Biginelli Expresso, 5th floor, School of Music, Australian National University, 2pm. Please come along if you feel like poetry or coffee (or both) in the middle of the day.

I understand that magpies cause some havoc in New Zealand, where they are an introduced species. So even though one might say Quardle oodle ardle wardle doodle, I doubt somehow that this feather represents the magpie. Click it, and you will fly to New Zealand, where further poetry awaits you.
Tuesday Poem

Launch

September 21, 2012

Last night Paul Hetherington launched Triptych Poets Issue Three, and a good time was had by all. I enjoyed Paul’s comments, although I became quite alarmed as he emphasised the way I use ideas in my poetry. I had had one or two drinks and could feel the few remaining ideas in my brain rapidly taking leave through my ears, their little wings stroking the lobes as they took off. It’s the sort of situation where you just nod and smile.

Fortunately I read first, before the last idea fairy had flown to a more fertile and curly cortex, throwing a look of disgust over her fickle shoulder.

J.C. Inman (Josh) gave an energetic and charismatic reading.

The launch was quite interesting in that it brought together people with their roots in the slam poetry scene, and those whose emphasis has always been on the written word. There were lots of people and I think we sold a few books too.

Thank you to Paul Hetherington. I would love to read what he wrote, as I am always too edgy at launches to take everything in. Thanks also to Paperchain Books, and all the people who came. Here is the MC for the evening, Lesley Boland from Blemish Books.


I bought myself a Where’s Wally? lunchbox as a souvenir. See, I really am an intellectual… I also have an idea for my next book’s title. A lady said that I was quite well-dressed, for a poet. Well Dressed for a Poet could be a goer. What do you think of that for a title?

If you would like to partake of the book, please head here, and Blemish Books will assist you in your noble endeavour.