In these prose poem sequences, five different tastes are explored, not only with reference to food and drink,but also through their metaphorical use. There are innumerable ways of ‘tasting’ and apprehending theworld, and these poems canvass a wide range of them while also encouraging readers to consider their own diverse tastes, preferences and experiences.
In Bed with Animals is a personal poetic exploration of the horror and banality in one woman’s lived experience of gender discrimination. It examines the contemporary world through an ecofeminist lens and considers the way that women, the environment, and animals suffer exploitation. This incendiary debut collection unsettles with its heartfelt ferocity.
In 1778, Dorothy Wordsworth’s mother died, and the six-year-old Dorothy was sent to live with extended family. She never returned to the family home, and it was not until adolescence that Dorothy became reacquainted with her brother William. The two formed an intense and passionate emotional bond. By 1794 they were living together from that time would rarely be physically separated for more than a few weeks at a time, for the rest of their lives.
Written in the voice of Dorothy, Beloved traces the progression of their relationship, from the ecstatic infatuation of youth onwards, drawing upon Dorothy’s diaries and letters as well as the recollections of friends and family members and literary and biographical scholarship.
In his first full-length poetry collection, Natural Philosophies, Michael J. Leach grasps for truth and solace by embracing interdisciplinary perspectives and alternative meanings. The poems in this collection address the archaic term ‘natural philosophy’—the philosophical study of nature and the universe—in past, present, and future contexts through the lenses of various natural science disciplines, including botany, zoology, astronomy, chemistry, and medicine. Michael explores a range of urgent personal and public issues, from climate change, extinction, and post-truth logic to assisted dying, natural death, and COVID-19, all the while pinpointing much-needed beauty across physical, emotional, and spiritual domains of existence.
Like much else that finds its way onto the internet, the poetry in ‘I saw the best memes of my generation’is fleeting, reactionary and selective with its facts—only ever tangentially concerned with the ‘real’ world. Somehow this book skewers SS utes, flower arrangement, the antiquated forms of Italian Opera, the emerging politics of the climate crisis and the misogynist underbelly of rock and roll with one flukey shot of an arrow. This much anticipated debut collection pins Symes’ viral poems down like delicate butterflies for the pleasure of your eighteenth century drawing room.
The contributions to ACE III are diverse in form and theme. As a composite picture the collection represents an expansive vision for short-form writing. We include work by authors from diverse cultural and geographical locations, including – Australia: Gadigal Country, Dharawal Country, Wodi Wodi Country, Wurundjeri land, Naarm, Jinibara Country, Whadjuk Country, Turrbal & Yuggera land, Ngunnawal Country, as well as Dallas (USA), Mexico City, Greece, Norway, Tbilisi: Georgia, NYC, Chennai: India, Singapore, and Saudi Arabia.
The authors examine the conundrum and contradiction of human experience through carefully crafted detail. The brevity of short-form writing makes it an apt vessel for capturing the haunting incompleteness of human experience. Through flash and traditional length short stories, creative nonfiction, memoir, and hybrid forms, there is a compelling ebb and tow of ideas, as focalised through highly idiosyncratic registers. The authors cultivate narrative detail with intuitive hands and minds, fashioning abstracted realities that linger well beyond the final lines of the text. The contributions leave the reader reeling, asking how it is possible that story-work can enter our affect cycle as if it were lived experience.
True to its title, the poems in O’Hagan’s second poetry collection, Anamnesis, allude to a world hovering at the edges of our minds, one that can be sensed and yet lies, teasingly, just beyond conscious reach. The arc of poems through time and distance represents a summoning up of, and immersion in, small moments which reveal themselves to be quietly momentous; a distillation of personal experience from which we feel there is something to be collectively gleaned. The recovery of memory in its various facets is explored, and the poetry that emerges is both poignant and lyrical.
Via numerous portrait poems of real and fictitious people revealed in Our Ways On Earth Peter Bakowski returns our attention to the individual. Via clear, non-judgemental portraiture Our Ways On Earth saves, for our consideration, individuals who might otherwise be buried, lost to us, under a slag heap of statistics, demographics and generalisation.
Whether in the Venetian footsteps of Vivaldi, at the birth of the Owen and Sassoon violins or the score of a Sam Peckinpah film, these poems present a wealth of musical scenarios, all interconnected in their themes, tonality and form. Their reverberations reach across time and space, from England and Italy to the Australian outback, with the visual arts also in the mix. And yet the core of this book is deeply personal, the poet present as a ten-year-old boy, lover, grandfather – or anachronistic witness – at the various trials of life through which creativity and even humour somehow flourishes.
Ragged Disclosures is a prose poetry collection that investigates liminality, intersubjectivity and the prose poetic sequence. These sequences combine to create a complex and distributed depiction of an intimate relationship during the COVID-19 pandemic in this era of climate change and political instability. As the volume considers the protagonists’ diverse experiences, it explores the development of connected poetic tropes while highlighting tensions between prose poetry’s compression and the countervailing tendency for sequential works to present an unfolding narrative arc. The inherent raggedness of the narrative gestures, combined with prose poetry’s condensed and suggestive boxes, is playful, contemporary and quintessentially poetic.
With stunning formal range and architectural design, Anders Villani’s second collection explores how violence engenders selfhood by calling it into radical question. What does it mean to suffer in a body that also symbolises power? How can poetry, alert to the ‘blur’ and the ‘panorama’, trace this moral dissonance at its subtlest and most intimate? How do notions of illness and recovery, victim and perpetrator, rest on fraught archetypes, and what alternate understandings emerge when these foundations waver? Villani roves between myth, confession, narrative, and dream to address such questions—not abstractly, but through the experiences of a subject whose capacity to love and be loved is at stake.
Novelistic in arc and scope, lyrically sensuous and searching, Totality invites readers on a journey of self-inquiry that dredges new channels in the contemporary poetics of trauma. As secrets reveal and conceal themselves, through the crucible of hypermasculinity, and with unstinting compassion, Villani’s poems venture an expansive and timely music.
Anita Patel’s second collection of poetry takes us on a voyage into history, heritage, mythology and family. These poems scatter and drift through layers of time, across cultures and continents. They offer glimpses into past worlds and present realities. They pay tribute to the yearning of a migrant heart, the search for home and the tensile strength of women. This is poetry that peers through the cloudy lens of memory to examine the tattered web of relationships, language, landscapes and stories which make up a self.
These are poems of love and loss, they imagine a world where hawks fly from the arms of lovers and disappear into a dying world, where golden fish rise from rivers and tangle themselves in hair, where molecules and mist carry messages of love through cites. In this collection, beginnings and endings slice across each other, modern and mythic intertwine, the everyday is stirred into a world of metaphor and incantation. Individual poems chime off each other, creating strands of narrative which circle the collection’s central symbol, the nekhau — small fish-shaped amulets crafted by ancient Egyptians and plaited through the hair of loved ones to ward off drowning. In a contemporary and at times imaginary world, the poems become nekhau, articulating the fears and dangers underlying love in order to subdue them. In doing so the poems transform many tropes of love poetry, repositioning them in contexts both everyday and otherworldly. The bodies in these poems fight against the mortality of love, they borrow lore and build new myths as a way to protect love’s fragility. Glistening with musicality and precision, these poems twist and shimmer like fish leaping toward the fears that have shaped them.
Beginning in Sight is Theodore Ell’s first poetry collection. It brings together work written over more than ten years, tapping into the memories, life-stories and mirror-images that resist time and recouple bygone experience to the drifting world of today. The poems branch out from Ell’s original home of Sydney into its hinterland, the coast and the Hunter, snatching moments of respite and pleasure in troubled times, before finding new bearings in the Canberra region. Haunted by the presence of vanished lives and histories, these are poems of perseverance, endurance and a past that seems to know what is coming.
Get all twelve of our new poetry collections released as they are released 2022
Featuring new work by:
July Anita Patel, Theodore Ell August
Anders Villani, Rico Craig September
Paul Munden, Paul Hetherington October
Denise O’Hagan, Peter Bakowski November
Bronwyn Lovell, Penelope Layland, Michael J. Leach, Dominic Symes