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I want to start with a problem: an overwhelming, close to paralyzing sense that an essay about John Ashbery’s poetry is like a representational critique of a cubist painting.

Francis Thompson 1859-1907 by Robert Adamson He slept by the Thames in newspapers, a makeshift blanket, fevered talk. A loaded opium pipe. How much did it cost for his pencil to curve across pages? At dawn a red fox limped past and unsettled the sparrows. Francis drew down words, one at a time— worried about his best lines as they appeared in print. He addressed envelopes in a curved hand to enfold his poems— then walked to the Post Office at Charing Cross. A century later, I read ‘The Hound of Heaven’ by a river in New South Wales, hear a bitter chuckle before his ‘running laughter’— revelation’s soundtrack.  Robert Adamson has lived near the Hawkesbury River for most of his life. A series of juvenile misdemeanours resulted in him being [...]

The Poetry Object encourages young writers and their teachers submit poems and photographs about objects that are special to them. Springing from The Red Room Company's education program, The Poetry Object is a free writing project for students attending NSW Public Schools in the Sydney Region. Special objects that inspired poems in 2011 included coffee machines, beloved pets and books, the Quran, cricket bats, musical instruments, jewellery and clothing, revealing the rich meanings that objects acquire as irreplaceable parts of our lives. As part of The Poetry Object 2012, six celebrated Australian poets have been commissioned to write new poems about their own talismanic objects. Winner of the Thomas Sharpcott Prize, Nicholas Powell; performance poet and fellow Sharpcott Prize winner Rachael Briggs; Judith Wright Prize runner-up Sarah-Jane Norman; 2011 City of Sydney Poet, Kate Middleton; Samantha Hogg, an exciting [...]

Exile: an invitation to a struggle

Whim as a form of virtue, constancy as grace.

Chittagong

HOW A THING TURNS WRETCHED

Are Michael Bay’s Transformers movies and the trend of using drones for assassination part of the same moral sickness? 

Mercy, unlike good manners or social nicety, can exist in hell.

The Ventriloquist’s Lament

When I was young, I wanted to stain the world with my permanence which is why, I suppose I became a poet.

If the hipster makes art that is everywhere, does the marginalized maker make art that is nowhere?

Attempts to Get Oats Into this Poem

The Master of Ceremonies

My dad dresses like Jack Kerouac--or, rather, Jack Kerouac, and Jackson Pollack, and all those guys dress like my dad: working clothes, work boots. The difference is my father doesn't write novels. he works 12 hour days in a paper factory, comes home to throw the ball around with me, is sometimes so tired that he falls asleep eating supper at the kitchen table.

Animal Collection, a new book of stories by Colin Winnette, is a subtle blend of experimentation and dramaturgy.