It’s 10 years this week since the culmination of a project Aidan Coleman and I ran in 2012, in which we invited South Australian poets to write about the renowned stained glass in St. Bart’s Church, Norwood, one of Adelaide’s oldest churches. Many of South Australia’s – and Australia’s – finest poets took up the challenge, 30 of them in all. The poems were showcased at a poetry reading at St. Bart’s in early November of that year, at which the poets read alongside the windows. A selection of the poems was anthologised in Light & Glorie (Pantaenus Press, 2012). The poems ranged from devotional to skeptical, from detailed to digressive, from the personal and aesthetic, to the historical. In the 10 years since, the newspaper articles about the project and two of the radio interviews have disappeared from their respective websites. But, happily, the Light & Glorie anthology is still available from Amazon, ABC Radio National’s hour-long podcast about the project is still online, and so are Robert Rath’s excellent photos of the poetry reading. Links below.
One of my poems is among 20 that have been tagged on the footpaths of Adelaide’s CBD, using invisible paint that appears only when it rains. My poem (‘To remember that a tree / is aired in sky as much / as it’s grounded in earth.’) can be found near the corner of Union and Grenfell Streets, opposite the Crown & Anchor Hotel. Many thanks to the Raining Poetry in Adelaide team, the JM Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice, and the City of Adelaide.
My poem ‘Dance of the Last Rhino’ has been published in Issue 2 of The Saltbush Review, an important new journal which focuses on connecting the South Australian literary community with readers and writing spaces across the world. Many thanks to Lyn, Gemma, Melanie, Clare, and Theodora of the editorial team.
My poem ‘Kinesis, Kenosis’ has been published in Social Alternatives’ ‘Poetry to the Rescue: Special Poetry Issue’, volume 40.3. Many thanks to the Poetry Editor, Aidan Coleman.
I’m delighted to say that Carte Blanche has been awarded the 2020 Mary Gilmore Award for the best first book of poetry published in Australia last year. I feel very honoured, particularly knowing what a great shortlist it was, and how many great books of Australian poetry have received the award in the past. Carte Blanche is available from Vagabond Press at www.vagabondpress.net
With the outbreak of Covid-19, many poets were left without the opportunity to showcase their new work at launches, readings and festivals. Red Room Poetry has stepped into the breach by publishing In Your Hands: A poetry collection for isolated times – a free digital anthology of 80 poems by Australian poets whose recent or forthcoming books have been affected by the pandemic. My poem ‘Brag or Bait’ is included in the anthology, which you can download HERE.
I’m delighted to feature in Australian Book Review’s ‘More Poetry for Troubled Times’ podcast. The podcast includes readings of poems by the likes of WB Yeats, Henry Lawson, Kenneth Slessor, Gwen Harwood, Bruce Dawe, Eavan Boland, Charles Simic, Czesław Miłosz, Denise Levertov, Emily Dickinson, and my selection, AR Ammons. The podcast is available via iTunes, Google and Spotify.