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Issue Details: First known date: 2022... 2022 Cronulla Muse : John Forbes’ Earliest Encounters with Reading and Writing Poetry
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Unlike many of his contemporaries, John Forbes (1950-1998) arrived at university as a poet who was not only writing with confidence and technical sophistication, but who already had his literary bearings, and thus a context for the new American poetry that had only just begun to have a serious influence in Australia. This essay explores the foundational period that culminates in Forbes' discovery of poetry as a vocation in 1967, detailing his reading habits, his education and his writing, the impact of an influential English teacher and his co-authorship of the earliest poem he would retain for his debut collection. In doing so, I hope not only to fill a gap in the biographical record but to investigate the basis of the poet's early achievement, while shedding some light on the highly developed sense of craft that characterised his work from the 197os until his death.' (Introduction)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon Westerly vol. 67 no. 2 2022 25521160 2022 periodical issue

     In approaching this issue's publication, we found ourselves reflecting on a line by the poet Yirga Gelaw Woldeyes, from his poem ከዋክብት መንገድ  / The Journey of Black Stars. In translation, Yirga writes, 'little things cast big shadows' (36). Small actions, In a poem, a story, or in any moment of contact, cast their ripples and edge out into the world, producing the unexpected. Contemplating the themes prominent in the works collected here, among them closeness, joy, sympathy and connection, we began to recognise one of those ripples as a possible catalyst for the works we have gathered, even if its effect wasn't noticeable at the time of curation. (Editorial introduction)

    pg. 158-170
Last amended 8 Dec 2022 09:36:51
158-170 Cronulla Muse : John Forbes’ Earliest Encounters with Reading and Writing Poetrysmall AustLit logo Westerly