Issue Details: First known date: 2014... 2014 Against Colony Collapse Disorder; or, Settler Mess in the Cells of Contemporary Australian Poetry
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'Colony collapse disorder describes a phenomenon whereby worker bees suddenly and inexplicably disappear from a hive. It has recently been identified as a syndrome following the rapid vanishing of Western honeybee colonies across North America and Europe. Justin Clemens also uses the term to describe an aesthetic collapse, whereby poets can only demonstrate their existence as ‘being caught dead’ given the fragile conditions of poetry and the inevitable, deadly effects of the past. He suggests that poets should be biothanatophiliacs: ‘The attempt to continue to write poetry in the consciousness of the impossibility of its continuation, to conjure new kinds of readers from the segmented and administered world of the present’ (100). This organic metaphor for the social, as well as for the aesthetic, figures the individual as having a singular function (the reader as a kind of ‘worker bee’) that is, nevertheless, integrally networked to other individuals. What I am interested in exploring in this paper is an alternative model of contemporary poetics that focuses on correspondences in otherwise unconnected ‘bees’ and the capacity for transformation in the face of a past that continues to contaminate and render the present ‘toxic.’' (Author's introduction)

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  • Appears in:
    y Cordite Poetry Review Canada / Australia no. 48.1 December 2014 8236868 2014 periodical issue 2014
Last amended 16 Feb 2015 13:31:43 Against Colony Collapse Disorder; or, Settler Mess in the Cells of Contemporary Australian PoetryAustLit Cordite Poetry Review