Paul Hetherington has published ten books of poetry and four chapbooks. He has an abiding interest in the visual arts and edited the final three volumes of the National Library of Australia’s four-volume edition of the diaries of the artist Donald Friend. He is one of the founding editors of the international online journal Axon: Creative Explorations and a founding editorial committee member of the Meniscus journal. He won the 2014 Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards (poetry) and was awarded a six-month Australia Council for the Arts Residency in the BR Whiting Studio in Rome for 2015-16. He was also awarded one of the two places on the 2012 Australian Poetry Tour to Ireland and shortlisted for the 2013 Montreal International Poetry Prize.
This latest project of ‘authorised theft’ amongst poetic friends sees them raiding the 19th century for inspiration—across a variety of artforms. But C19 here is not just a past century; it is also the terrible present moment in which we live, and in which this remarkable collaborative work has been written.
When Charity finds letters, journals and sketches in the roof of her great-aunt’s house, she uncovers a rich family history that she must piece together from fragments. Great-aunt Birdie’s letters to her lover are a compelling and revealing account of life for many women in the 1930s. Her experiences as an artist in the first decades of the century, and her earlier relationship with a young man who goes to war, also provide powerful insights into a woman who, as Charity begins to suspect, wanted more than her era would allow.
The six senses have rarely been invoked in such sustained and evocative poetical terms. Whether one wants to understand touch, taste, smell, hearing, intuition or sight, this volume provides myriad avenues enabling a rich appreciation of sensory experience.
This new prose poetry sequence from Paul Hetherington explores the power of memory and the hauntings of childhood. It takes the reader on a sensuous and richly imagistic journey into expansive ideas of self and identity. It probes and questions the nature of recollection, and how the role of the father and mother may be understood, drawing on a number of existing literary works to create elaborately poetic and deeply satisfying verbal textures.
Paul Hetherington’s long prose poem Íkaros crafts from the myth of the same name, a unique inspiration and imagination spanning multiple layers of time and consciousness, incorporating memory and dreamscapes into an exceptionally potent exploration of a journey through to self-awareness. Central to the myth of Íkaros and to this collection is the relationship between father and son portrayed by Hetherington with exquisite honesty and tenderness, at once explorative and elegiac. His vision’s complexity is expressed in clear, honed language, its fresh imagery enabling a rare and compassionate depth of insight. This is a painterly, highly visual and visceral work with compelling underlying cadences and rhythms. Hetherington gifts the reader with “a necklace of words; utterances like waves and beach-tossed stones” and a telling capacity to listen closely and to see clearly.
Cities are as complex and unknowable as they are familiar and unsurprising. We can feel as if we know a city intimately, or merely indicate its mysteries to our fleeting perceptions. Or its mysteries can appear in and through the mundane. Cities reveal their collective ghosts through their landscapes, their histories, their people, their sounds and smells. Cities ask us to invent not only ourselves, but a view of ourselves within the cityscape we imagine.
This prose poetry collection takes the reader through a gallery of European art, exploring modes of representation and the eddying connections between language and visual imagery. As it does so, it probes ways in which language ‘sees’, often in intimate ways. This collection also explores human history and culture, and the links between past and present—some works of art are like a form of memory and reach directly into viewers’ personal experiences. The gallery you encounter in these pages is notionally situated in Rome, but it is only fully constituted in these pages—containing, as it does, artworks on loan from elsewhere, such as Giorgione’s famous painting La Tempesta, usually housed in Venice. Although this book is made of words, it will conduct you on an unforgettable gallery tour.