Added: Melany Mysliwiec - Date: 23.01.2022 09:56 - Views: 41754 - Clicks: 6577
He is a poet, art critic, publisher, and editor of the literary magazines Otis Rush and Magic Sam. He lives with author Cath Kenneally. This interview was was commissioned by John Tranter for Jacket magazine. It is 18, words or about 40 printed s long. When I was about nine we moved into a war-service home in Warrawee on the North Shore: the street was a muddy path in the bush when we arrived and my dad cleared the land, though it was asphalt by about the time we moved in. The bush was great for spending time in, never absolutely boring. My parents separated when I was eleven and my father brought up my younger sister and me.
There were no books in the house, aside from the phone book and the Yates Garden Guide. No art either. I started reading voraciously, going quickly from science fiction and Ian Fleming to Penguin paperbacks and their modern classics particularly, which I thought a guarantor of adult sophistication. So I was oddly well-read, having skipped everything canonical and enjoyed the curiosities. Scott-Fitzgerald, but by eighteen I had read all of Nathaniel West.
That sort of thing. Ken: I had no connection with visual art. I remember I went to the Art Gallery one weekend. Anyway, I loved it. I tutored in it for a while and very nearly became an Art Historian. I found Donald Brook a very influential teacher at university, a philosopher and critic amongst the art historians. At school a of teachers probably looked out for me — and I liked a lot of them and owe them a great deal of gratitude — but it was then a very unacademic school. We were all poor, or poor-ish Catholic kids of no culture.
In my final year only one person matriculated to university, for example, and that was a university in the country! The next year — I repeated the year — there were half a dozen of us made it. The demographic of the school was changing. I think soon after it rapidly became an expensive school and began performing. But in my time it had very big classes, quite a proportion of unqualified teachers. Just read books — my idea of Life. This has sort of been my attitude ever since unfortunately. Who did you begin reading, and what was your first poem? Ken: I was in high school in the sixties.
The poetry that seemed interesting was Donne and Eliot. Though I remember we read Pope and Coleridge and Tennyson, and they were big on Hopkins because of his religious nature. I liked that you could analyse it and see how it worked. We were never asked to try to write any. I started to write poetry in my early twenties while at university.
I read around to see what was supposed to be contemporary. But at some stage I met other poets and would-be poets and would have discovered back issues of New Poetry around that time — which led to the then more current stuff.
It was quite a while before I wrote anything very interesting, though by about I was probably committed to it, despite not thinking very much of the poems I had so far written. One was a set of scenes, views, walks, and thoughts, on cards that could be shuffled. Well, that probably indicates my animus towards it. It was set in Glebe, around the railway viaduct and park and canal. You should ask me another question before more comes back to me. Could you discuss where you feel your early poetry practice was placed in relation to what was happening at the time?
Or did you feel that you were writing outside all that? And it seemed, really, to be a couple of tribes and individuals, nothing very unitary. If it was. Applestealers did seem exciting. I was interested in the work of Laurie Duggan and John Forbes. In the mid s I was mostly reading New York School poetry, and art history and art criticism in Studio International and Artforum , where the issues of the sixties were working themselves out — abstract Expressionism, Pop Art literalism, Minimalism, Conceptualism — or they were working themselves into an interesting grid-lock.
All this and more made up much of my mental world. A map that was maybe not very real in relation to the rest of the world. But lists like these Do you think this is an accurate reflection on what was happening or not happening at the time? So, do you feel that poets living in different Australian cities were working out different leftover problems from the s?
And if so, how and why were they going about things so differently? I mean, the mail was working. That is, three groupings — as well as those too old or too uncool to count. This is to recall and caricature the thinking of the time. Admittedly, I wrote it, but Happy Accidents — one of the few poems to be inspired by the mission of bibliography — provides a map of who was reading what in the s. Forbes and Duggan were friends with Wearne and Scott.
Tranter, I think, was out of the country for quite a while — in touch with both sets, though identified with those latter four poets. Applestealers included Forbes and Tranter, Viidikas and Nigel Roberts, for example — but there had been mooted for a while a Sydney equivalent. That is, it had poets from Melbourne and Sydney. Many still are. How did the Sydney community begin to define itself aesthetically, and as poets making poems and magazines and books? What drew you to that group of people? Were they just fun to hang out with?
I know a poet — you should meet her. Mostly you read books and wrote, drank, smoked, looked out the window and changed the record occasionally. I think the Melbourne wing were less like this — and I was happy enough to think that way, too. Same goes for Pam Brown. We were friends. Our writing and thinking had some commonality — different for each of us — but enough not to get in the way and often to be usefully provocative.
In Sydney, magazines and publishing imprints were mostly under-capitalized exercises in achieving fame. In Melbourne, they had more aesthetico-political purpose, as befits their more communitarian leaning. And maybe for that reason they often kicked on longer. This was the chief divide in the Sydney scene, a division which set up the absent Tranter at one pole and Adamson at the other. The Melbourne crowd would also have seen themselves in opposition to the romanticism of New Poetry. Or bemused by it! I think. This is a recollection of what was a subjective view anyway.
Was the view correct? Is the recollection? The view was very partially informed and partisan. A wider view would have noted the Poetry Australia -affiliated. Squaresville, so we ignored them. In I finished the degree I mentioned before, majoring in Art History, and I tutored for a year in twentieth-century art, took a year off and then tutored a little more. I had money for a few years to do an MA, and I just lived on that and wrote and read. Laurie Duggan moved in soon after I left, I think. I lived for a time with writer Anna Couani moving just down Glebe Point Road, to Leichhardt Street and began publishing a magazine at that time.
My own first books came out in and My life began to change, various alliances, friendships, orientation and focus all began to change and shift. The Citroens, the structuralism, the smoky free-form jazz She practically wanted to call the police!
But she was getting on, really. It was odd to have got her attention at all. So, those on side were ready for it — and applauded its appearance. Cinema is in there — but largely as an easy genre-target to utilize and parody at the same time. Is that the term, or eschatology? Green and the others were reviewing that. I watched a lot of TV as a teenager, as well as reading a lot of books. So I know the stars of an earlier generation better than my own. I had them under my skin. I wanted the poems to be ravishing — in part, at least, and in another part to be parodying that.
I had barely heard of it in the early 70s and found it very hard to get my head around in the late 70s when I first tried. Roland Barthes was more fun, and Foucault, whom I probably began reading around But Levi-Strauss I missed out on.
My bower-bird sampling and presentation of loosely linked items would to some of them have been pretty infuriating. Vicki Viidikas, for example, saw it as unacceptable. And beautiful. And witty.Hangout friends maybe more 27 Trieste 27
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