From the newest to the most established it would be an unusual writer who did not feel exposed – naked – at several stages in the creation and presentation of a work: when they sit down to the demands (so often their own demands of themselves) of the blank page or screen, when they first show the work to another, and when the work becomes subject to the comments and analyses of reviewers, critics, scholars. This issue of Southerly began to form around a handful of strong essays on Australian writers – Scott Esposito’s on J.M. Coetzee, Ann-Marie Priest’s on Gwen Harwood, Michael Buhagiar’s on Christopher Brennan and Swinburne – and was originally to be called Regarding the Writer. But further pieces gathered: Esposito writes of Coetzee’s characters (it is not Elizabeth Costello alone) in effect morally naked at the Gate; Priest’s essay exposes – it might be better to say exhumes – Gwen Harwood’s love for her teacher/mentor Vera Cottew.
But Southerly’s “themes” have never been intended to take over entire issues. It is our pleasure to present Alex Miller’s Hazel Rowley Memorial Lecture, a moving account of their friendship and Hazel’s work; Michelle Borzi’s retrospective on the poetry of Chris Wallace-Crabbe; an essay by the philosopher Emmanuel Levinas, and Ellin Williams’ short but absorbing history of white occupation of the Jenolan Caves. To further extend the readers’ pleasure, there is a fine piece of short fiction by Tessa Lunney, and a rich selection of recent Australian poetry, amongst it Jakob Ziguras’ “Vanity Fair”, winner of the 2013 David Harold Tribe Poetry Award.
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Judith Beveridge, Karma
Frank Boyce, Vision of a Second Landing
Dan Disney, Critique, Aubade
Stephen Edgar, Spirits of Place
Zenobia Frost, Early Rituals
Helen Hagemann, Monarchs & Homeric Thought
D.J. Huppatz, Circlejerk vs Counter-circlejerk
Sam Langer, Fantasia on Themes Printed in Southerly 73.1, You Were
Claire Roberts, As Though
John Watson, After Heavy Seas, Off-breaks