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Issue Details: First known date: 2018... 2018 Pam Brown's Ghostly Signature : 'Half Here / Half Gone
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'Already, in her 1974 volume Automatic Sad, poet Pam Brown's melancholy protagonist is seriously dissatisfied. S/he sees "... dark corners / and black holes here" ("The Collapse" 17), losing her head "midframe in the city again / with a bag of banal images" (17). S/he is "desperate / in similar sad thoughts / think(s) maybe some angel ... might roll into the house and unwrap the mystery I've been solving for thousands of years" (17). Poet, social critic and existential being are dose here, but distinct; each ghosts the other, playing hard to get and hard to pin down, with each other let alone with the reader. Is "The Collapse" an indicative poem of tentative hope and poetic generation, or of melancholy/ruefulness/ irony/ self-disappearance, or both? Between irony, social critique and tongue-in-cheek, Brown's poems are little disappearing acts. Or at least putative attempts at self-deconstruction, being both within language, and pressing to be somewhere beyond it: "Half here / Half gone" (106). (Introduction)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon Feeding the Ghost : 1 : Criticism on Contemporary Australian Poetry Andy Kissane (editor), David Musgrave (editor), Carolyn Rickett (editor), Waratah : Puncher and Wattmann , 2018 15390956 2018 anthology criticism

    'This book is aimed at providing criticism on contemporary Australian poetry in a form that is accessible to general readers. It is intended to be the first in a series which will grapple with the bewildering diversity of the contemporary poetry scene. Australian poetry deserves a criticism that accompanies the astonishing momentum and luminosity that has developed, which both elucidates the scale of poetic achievement and is also not afraid to evaluate that achievement through a rigorous and disinterested critical lens. Australian poets have been feeding the ghost with extraordinary energy and acumen over the last quarter of a century; it is now time for Australian poetry criticism to catch up.' (Introduction)

    Waratah : Puncher and Wattmann , 2018
    pg. 168-189
Last amended 26 Mar 2019 10:09:09
168-189 Pam Brown's Ghostly Signature : 'Half Here / Half Gonesmall AustLit logo