$9.95

Counsel for the Defence

  

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Judy Johnson’s Counsel for the Defence is a courageous collection of poems which confront and expose some of the darker sides of human nature. Characters and events are brought to life through unequivocal, relentless honesty.

The first section, named A Modesty of Flowers belies its themes, expressed through the vehicle of botany, on rape, shame, physical and emotional abuse, innocence of young love and the tragedy of the loss of a child.  The poetic narrative here is fierce and fearless.

“…………………………………………………………………………..Shame’s smell

is barn-owl, camphor, and blood-lust. Shame’s

name is ‘noxious weed’. No-one blamed him”

 

The historical poetic narrative in the second section, From: Dark Convicts centers around Johnson’s First Fleet convict ancestor, John Martin, an African American ex-slave. The unyielding inhumanity at the core of colonization is graphically portrayed and the reality of emancipation in “Fifty acres of spine-snapping bush.” brings to a close a collection that is profoundly moving.

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