Tag Archives: Queensland Poetry Festival

hangover of words

If anyone finds me in a park        

dribbling metaphors in compass directions

lap full of new books      

and muttering how council workers enjambed

the hedge too much like a map of canada   

       

would you kindly

wipe my chin with melalueca bark

explain to the officer 

about the poetry festival on the weekend

and let me return to society another day.

sincerlycheers

wordfriedprawn.

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That zero year

That zero year is the publication of work Tiggy and I have collaborated on over the past year. It deals with all things parenting and kids, hits raw nerves in places and I’m stoked to be placing it out there for readers to enjoy. I love what these three brilliant poets have to say and feel truly blessed to have their words donning the back cover: 

From the sudden weight of Thirteen weeks to the biting complaints of Fishing, That zero year screams with joy. These poems form a dialogue of love and loss; unpicking stitches in the family weave to welcome us to the bedside table of these most private moments. Here, we witness breath-taking devastation – the missing knee in the chest, the remembered rub of a belly – and wide-eyed wonder – a smile wriggled through to the toes. That zero year is an unflinching celebration of breath and blood. Phillips and Johnson know what it is to be alive and we are richer for it.

Graham Nunn

This collection is like an unsuspecting orientation manual, uniting what appears to be uncomplicated materials, recognisable motifs, familiar situations and mapped out structures but, in all reality, holds the weight of ten sinking cities and leads me back to that Talking Heads lyric, ‘how did I get here?’

Pascalle Burton

As reflections on domestic life and the intimacy of family, these are fine poems. But as portraits of loss, love, and grief, and of what happens in the months and years that follow tragedy, they are vivid, unflinching, and beautiful.

Michelle Dicinoski

The book will be available for purchase at the QPF bookshop this weekend. We will be performing our set on Sunday morning so if you’re around Brisbane, we would love to see you there – 11am at Judith Wright Centre and here’s a taste of what you’ll get if you pick up a copy of That zero year.

The home midwife

She pulls up in a hatchback,
carries her leather case swollen
with years in and out of waters

a little vial of rose oil
and herbs transferred through bellyskin
to help the body yawn.

She walks down a hallway
to brew a pot of raspberry leaf,
fennel, singing nettle

and chats between the heavy breaths,
makes a joke about stir frying the placenta
but doesn’t laugh.

No phone code or knife sharpening
for spine on spine, head up bottom down
or umbilical wrapped around the neck

she has whispering hands;
chinese point massage to coach
an aquatic half somersault
and unfurl the ribbon.

She reads faces too
guides a father’s hands
to be in on the magic of catching skin
slippery as water

it’s a black art
to let a baby happen
in your living room.

Call-Back-Poet! Yeewwww!

SpeedpoetsSpeedpoets Call-Back-Poet

Hop over to the Speedpoets website to check out my new poem ‘The home midwife’ I read at Speedpoets open mic last month. I was stoked to be called back up to the mic again to read a couple more poems. August Speedpoets happens this Saturday 4th at Brew, 2pm.

QPF Interview

The Queensland Poetry Festival is just around the corner. You’ll find the interview with Tiggy and I over at the Queensland Poetry Festival website. Click on ‘Program’ to find all the brilliant artists performing at QPF later this month. I hope you come along to enjoy the weekend festival of words and sounds.  It’ll be spectacular.

Queensland Poetry Festival 2012 ‘Spoken in one strange word’

I’m stoked to announce the Queensland Poetry Festival 2012 is launched and rolling. It is looking to be a cracker event and among the incredible line up of international and local poets performing, this Piedhillprawn will be a part of the event for the first time. 

On Sunday 26th August 11am, I’ll be performing with Tiggy Johnson in the ‘Storm and Honey’ session in the Shopfront Space. This is a collaborative project we’ve been working on over the past year. Don’t miss it. The session also includes the set ‘MC Lady Lazarus vs. DJ Thought Fox’ which is certain to be explosive. Yep, page poets and stage poets for the full experience in the shopfront space. 

A Million Bright Things is the showcase on Saturday night 8pm where Queensland Poet in Residence a.rawlings launches the Queensland focussed component of her series Sound Poetry and Visual Poetry.  This will be followed by a short set from every performer on the program. Not to be missed. 

Also performing at QPF this year is Robert Adamson, who ‘has fished the Hawkesbury River for poems for more than four decades’. I love Adamson’s work and am super excited to be able to see several performances from him. There are so many more so go and check out the program for yourself. See you there.

Queensland Poetry Festival – Spoken In One Strange Word

My head is still buzzing with their words.  Cracking poets (and musicians) graced the stages of the Judith Wright Centre over last weekend.  Here are a few of my highlights.  Before I do, this is my 100th post, which is some kind of milestone and also means I’m a bit irregular at blogging but the QPF marks 1 year since I ran into the poetry community here in Brisbane.  I’ve met amazing poets, ridden a steep learning curve about all things poetry and it felt like a bit of a celebration to read one of my poems at the Ekka recently.   I also read at the open mic event at QPF last Sunday.  Stoked is this Pied Hill Prawns.  Anyway (some of) my highlights:

Max Ryan -It was great to see Max again and here him read from his work.  I particularly enjoy Journey of The Beatles fan about a trip down to Sydney to see JohnPaulGeorgeRingo.  Everytime I hear it I’m on that bus with all the anticipation.  Check out an interview with Max over at Another Lost Shark

Aidan Coleman’s sharp images had me frozen in my chair and wanting to jump up and yell ‘Yeah!’ at the same time.  He read some pieces from his first book Avenues and Runways and work from his new book Asymmetry to be released next year.  The new work covers a particularly heavy period in life when Aidan had a stroke.  One poem that stood out (and I hope I have the title correct) was A prayer for my right hand.  I can’t wait for the release of Asymmetry.  There is also an interview with Aidan over at Another Lost Shark – well worth the read and a good place to look out for Asymmetry.

It was great to meet Ashley Capes after some online contact over the past year.  I really enjoyed him reading some of his haiku which just so happens to be on video over at his blog – check it out: Ashley Capes

Sawako Nakayasu wowed us with hamburgers and ant poems.  Yes ant poems.  Here’s a youtube reading of two ant poems.  I hope she records some more or releases a cd with her book coming out soon. 

There are so many other poet’s work I have bouncing around in my head including the political poems of Australian poet in residence  Sandra Thibodeaux, Qld’s poet in residence Jacob Polley (loved hearing him read Smoke) and WA poet and celloist Kevin Gillam.  I will never forget an impromptu performance by Marissa Allen and Kevin playing violin and cello to finish off Marissa’s reading. 

I’ll post the poem I read at the Ekka and open mic soon.  A flood poem I’ve taken some time to work on since January.  In the mean time I have plenty of purchased poetry from the event I need to attend to.  Cheers QPF