Riot Control/Public Order is inspired by the photographs of Sarah Pickering, particularly her collection Public Order – “a project exploring the Metropolitan Police Public Order Training Centre, a simulated urban environment where officers rehearse responses to civic unrest.”
The poem investigates the idea of protest, civil disobedience and the response of the government.
I built a bonfire in his belly
and I’m burning our bones.
It’s cavernous in here, there’s no light,
no stars, no moon;
instead of wind,
the sound organs make,
the breath, the heartbeat,
rivers of blood complicating his fingers
Two of my poems are included in the Shut Down Strangers anthology released to celebrate Springsteen’s 70th birthday and to capture all the different reasons and ways people have of loving Springsteen’s work.
The anthology is published by Bone & Ink Press it contains a range of work – fiction, non fiction and poetry – that bounces off Springsteen’s songs.
“The work in this anthology speaks deeply to the gift that is Springsteen’s music and is a testament to the way his lyrics play in our heads, resonate in our souls, and help us make sense of the world and feel so much less alone. This book is evidence that almost anyone can find their way into his songs, as if Springsteen purposely left space for them. His characters capture the imagination of these writers and live on, becoming as real as anything, infusing the reader with the sense of belonging, connection, and community found in listening to Springsteen’s songs.”
–Shawna Lemay is the author of Rumi and the Red Handbag and other books.
I created two centos from Springsteen songs, which is a VERY unusual way for me to write, usually I’m totally uninterested in writing that involves puzzling around with other people’s words, but this was heaps of fun. Here’s an extract from my poem that used the lyrics from Its Hard to be a Saint in the City and Lost in the Flood
dressed in drag for homicide
‘hey kid…this countryside is a hurricane
oil and blood
breaking beams and crosses
senses thrown to war
every noise boy smiles sweet
and pleads immaculate conception’
Super happy to have my poem Cicada Wings in the latest Grieve Anthology – released by Hunter Writers Centre! This is an annual project run by the writers centre collecting poetry, non fiction and pieces of fiction that explore ideas around grief and loss. There are some great pieces in the current collection.
The poem is an odd exploration of confusion and reflection created by loss. The first stanza is below, to read the whole poem head over to Spry Lit for a look.
Tonight, at the back fence, on my knees in the bed where pumpkin vines have turned to ogres, I’m hiding teeth, enamelled seeds, two knuckles deep in the cold earth.
This poem is one of the new poems that will be included in the updated republication of Bone Ink.
Speaking of – I’m super happy to share the news that UWA Publishing have decided to re-release Bone Ink in October 2019. The updated version will include all the poems from the original version, including some that have been slightly reworked, and forty pages of new poems. It’s great to know that soon Bone Ink will be back out in the world.
A Cheekbone For You To Climb Over is one of the new poems that will be part of the expanded reprint of Bone Ink due out with UWA Publishing in 2019. I’m really happy to have it out in the world, it reminds me of a lot of things – London in winter, secrets in stairwells and council flats.