Australian literature and politics magazine Overland is on the verge of celebrating its 200th issue. A special feature of said issue will be a 200 line poem composed of lines written by twenty Australian poets.
I’m lucky enough to count myself amongst that select group, thanks to an invitation from ‘poem-master’ Derek Motion to send ten lines.
On second thought, I decided to act like a hivemind, a super-conscious eye patrolling wild perimeters, my role akin to that of those who first rejected me, namely : exclude some, & keep the others looking busy. But then (and this is the strange part) I began to display & /or exhibit signs of a new dispensation: i.e., exclusion now being the new black; or white. Speaking of post- /modern conditions, like a pompous twit I recall that when I raged against the latrine, nobody bothered to clean up afterwards. This, I leave to you - & to fate.
Unlike Adam, I’m in no real position to expound upon how these lines were written except to say that in Derek’s original invitation he gave the prompt: ‘on a role: then / now / when’ and I responded by including elements from this prompt in my lines.
One thing I can say for sure, having seen the remixed 200-liner in raw form, is that it’s going to be a doozy. Can’t wait to see the whole thing in print.
UPDATE: my copy of Overland 200 has now arrived, and I have to admit I’m in love with the Benson & Hedges Extra Mild colour of the cover (which looks nothing like the image I’ve posted above). Also, as you’ll see below in comments, Louise Waller has blogged her ten-line contribution.
UPDATE: the full text of the poem, which is entitled ‘Before Elapsing’, is now online.