Tag Archives: Nigel Ellis

My Aching Back: Lyndon Norton Remix

It’s time for one last remix of My Aching Back… and with this post comes the news that the original poem will be published in Kokako, a fine journal of Japanese forms published in New Zealand. It’s wonderful to see this poem reaching a wide audience. So now, it’s over to Lyndon to give it one last spin…

*****

My Aching Back: Lyndon Norton Remix

Side 1 – jo – preface

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku (autumn)

my aching back
a leaf falls
from a branch

(Matt Hetherington)

Link #2 (2 lines) – wakiku (autumn)

as I put down the rake
the sky darkens

(Lyndon Norton)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan (non seasonal)

cold night
our words
left hanging

(Cindy Keong)

Side 2 – ha part one – development

Link #4 (2 lines) – winter  moon

stuck up a tree
winter moon

(Andy Smerdon)

Link #5 (3 lines) – non seasonal

not even the radio
tonight
a bus passes

(Jonathan Hadwen)

Link #6 (2 lines) – non seasonal

the old dog dreams
of the chase

(Mal Keeble)

Side 3 – ha part two – intensification

Link #7 (3 lines) – spring blossom

along the edge
of her grave
a row of daffodils

(Cindy Keong)

Link #8 (2 lines) – spring

shadows shrink
sun cannot warm the air

(John Wainwright)

Link #9 (3 lines) – non seasonal

behind teeth
a storm gathers
I cannot swallow this

(Nigel Ellis)

Side 4 – kyu – finale

Link #10 (2 lines)- non seasonal, love verse

all that remains
broken on the shoreline

(Cindy Keong)

Link #11 (3 lines) – non seasonal, love verse

incoming tide
waiting for
the next wave

(Cindy Keong)

Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku (summer)

nothing matters
after sunset

(Carly Jay Metcalfe)

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Shisan: My Aching Back

Before I begin to discuss the poems, let me thank absolutely everyone who has been following the development of My Aching Back. To each of the poets who have offered their words, thank you, and to all of the readers, you are why we keep showing up. In fact, to everyone who has ever visited the site, thank you for keeping me energised!

Now, to the poems… with so many to enjoy, I have decided to discuss the five poems that have made my shortest of short lists. The five poems are:

nothing matters
after sunset

(Carly)

This poem is so direct, so fitting to bring the shisan to its end… not only does it add a gorgeous splash of colour, it reaches into the darkness beyond and in doing so opens up an afterlife for the poem and links us back to Matt’s hokku.

*

an empty bed
under the poinciana

(Mal)

Like Carly’s poem, this adds a big splash of colour and smacks of late summer afternoons, seeking refuge from the heat. It’s leap forward to the hokku is so vivid and the emptiness of the bed leaves room for the incoming tide to settle. Truly magnificent!

*

the snake flows
over dry grass

(Chloe)

The sound of this poem has held me transfixed… The use of the word ‘flows’ continues the movement of the incoming tide while adding a quiet menace to the poem. Such a unique portrayal of summer in Australia and such a strong leap to Matt’s ‘my aching back’.

*

peeling the skin
off the day

(Miguel)

The action in this poem is easily understood by anyone who has spent too many hours (or is that minutes?) in the relentless summer sun… many a time have I felt like peeling the skin off the day (as well as off various parts of my body) as the light blisters everything in sight.

*

it’s decided then:
last round’s on me

(Chris)

It feels very fitting to take a seat at the bar (with Chris and everyone else) and toast this poem. I love the generosity of this poem… for me, it captures the camaraderie of the group that has gathered to compose this poem. Would be wonderful to gather everyone together in real time to have that drink!

And on that note, it is time to choose the final pearl in our shisan. To hold down the position of the ageku, and bring us full circle, I have chosen Chloe’s ‘the snake flows’.

But let’s not make this the end… as we did with the New Junicho, I would love people to send me through their own remix of the poem. So if you are up for it, the only poem that needs to remain in place, is Matt’s hokku which gives the poem its name, other than that, here is a link to each of the posts so that you can go back and read through all of the poems and make your own selections.

http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/05/15/shisan-my-aching-back-links-1-2/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/05/19/shisan-my-aching-back-links-3-4/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/05/21/shisan-my-aching-back-link-4-5/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/05/23/shisan-my-aching-back-links-5-6/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/05/27/shisan-my-aching-back-links-6-7/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/05/29/shisan-my-aching-back-links-7-8/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/05/31/shisan-my-aching-back-links-8-9/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/06/02/shisan-my-aching-back-links-9-10/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/06/04/shisan-my-aching-back-links-10-11/
http://anotherlostshark.com/2013/06/06/shisan-my-aching-back-links-11-12/

I hope to read (and post) remixes from many of you. The depth of writing offers such great potential, so have fun playing with it!

*****

My Aching Back: Shisan
Started: 15 May 2013 – Finished:
Written between: Matt Hetherington, Lyndon Norton, Ashley Capes, Lee-Anne Davie, Chris Lynch, Mal Keeble, Chloe Callistemon, John Wainwright, Nigel Ellis, Andy Smerdon, Cindy Keong

Side 1jo – preface

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku (autumn)

my aching back
a leaf falls
from a branch

(Matt Hetherington)

Link #2 (2 lines) – wakiku (autumn)

as I put down the rake
the sky darkens

(Lyndon Norton)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan (non seasonal)

in the shed
removing a dropcloth
from old paintings

(Ashley Capes)

Side 2ha part one – development

Link #4 (2 lines) – winter  moon

gravy smears the dinner plate
winter moon

(Lee-Anne Davie)

Link #5 (3 lines) – non seasonal

I regret
the light switch
cockroaches

(Chris Lynch)

Link #6 (2 lines) – non seasonal

the old dog dreams
of the chase

(Mal Keeble)

Side 3ha part two – intensification

Link #7 (3 lines) – spring blossom

the puppy
pisses on all
the daffodils

(Chloe Callistemon)

Link #8 (2 lines) – spring

spring shower
yolk burst on the tongue

(John Wainwright)

Link #9 (3 lines) – non seasonal

behind teeth
a storm gathers
I cannot swallow this

(Nigel Ellis)

Side 4kyu – finale

Link #10 (2 lines)- non seasonal, love verse

china doll
still holding hands

(Andy Smerdon)

Link #11 (3 lines) – non seasonal, love verse

waiting for
the next wave
incoming tide

(Cindy Keong)

Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku (summer)

the snake flows
over dry grass

(Chloe Callistemon)

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Shisan: My Aching Back (Links #11 – #12)

We are now breathing distance from the ageku and the end of the shisan. What a thrill selecting each link has proven to be; and this is thanks to the vibrant community that has gathered to build this poem word by word, image by image, link by link. So let’s jump in and take a look at the poems on offer for the second of our love links.

Again, it was exciting to see love painted with such broad brushstrokes. From the inspiration that floods from Miguel’s ‘blushed cheeks’, to the glow of smartphones between Lyndon’s lovers; the glorious presence of Aaron’s ‘glimmering eyes’ to the fragrance that lingers as Mal skips a stone across the water; the dark intent of John’s moon to the distance between  Lyndon’s tide and lovers; the nakedness of words as Andy slow dances us across the floor to the lull between waves that Cindy leaves us to experience; we experience love in one of its many outfits.

Each of these poems has its own possibility, and many have held (and continue to hold) me in there spell. In making my decision, I have gone back through Links 1 – 10, to ensure that Link #11 breaks new ground, as now, more than ever, it is important to look forward without referencing any of the previous images. Sadly, this ruled out some excellent links… two examples of poems that would otherwise be a fine addition to the shisan are Miguel’s ‘his blushed cheek’ (its use of canvas creates a direct link back to Ashley’s ‘old paintings’ in Link #3), and John’s ‘moonshine’ (in the shisan, there can only be one moon image).

So with this in mind, I have been moving between two poems to make the next leap. These poems are the uproariously funny ‘pyjamas’ (John) and Cindy’s ‘incoming tide’. In the end, the tide carried me away and for Link #11, we welcome Cindy into the shisan. The hushed tones and longing pull of this poem will provide the perfect touchstone to bring us full circle with Link #12. To strengthen the flow of the poem, I have however, decided to change the position of the fragment – incoming tide – moving it from line 1 to line 3.

So let’s open the final call out… Link #12, the ageku, asks for 2 lines with a good splash of summer. It is also important that this link in some way brings us back to imagery in Matt’s opening link (the hokku).

Enjoy the last leap!

*****

My Aching Back: Shisan
Started: 15 May 2013 – Finished:
Written between: Matt Hetherington, Lyndon Norton, Ashley Capes, Lee-Anne Davie, Chris Lynch, Mal Keeble, Chloe Callistemon, John Wainwright, Nigel Ellis, Andy Smerdon,

Side 1jo – preface

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku (autumn)

my aching back
a leaf falls
from a branch

(Matt Hetherington)

Link #2 (2 lines) – wakiku (autumn)

as I put down the rake
the sky darkens

(Lyndon Norton)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan (non seasonal)

in the shed
removing a dropcloth
from old paintings

(Ashley Capes)

Side 2ha part one – development

Link #4 (2 lines) – winter  moon

gravy smears the dinner plate
winter moon

(Lee-Anne Davie)

Link #5 (3 lines) – non seasonal

I regret
the light switch
cockroaches

(Chris Lynch)

Link #6 (2 lines) – non seasonal

the old dog dreams
of the chase

(Mal Keeble)

Side 3ha part two – intensification

Link #7 (3 lines) – spring blossom

the puppy
pisses on all
the daffodils

(Chloe Callistemon)

Link #8 (2 lines) – spring

spring shower
yolk burst on the tongue

(John Wainwright)

Link #9 (3 lines) – non seasonal

behind teeth
a storm gathers
I cannot swallow this

(Nigel Ellis)

Side 4kyu – finale

Link #10 (2 lines)- non seasonal, love verse

china doll
still holding hands

(Andy Smerdon)

Link #11 (3 lines) – non seasonal, love verse

waiting for
the next wave
incoming tide

(Cindy Keong)

Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku (summer)

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Shisan: My Aching Back (Links #10 – #11)

As the shisan builds to a crescendo, it seems fitting that we burst into the theme of love for links #10 and then #11. Love is such a wild landscape, so I was very keen to see where people were going to land with their offerings.

John started things off playfully, revealing the nut within after being kissed and returned later to be kissed again while watching his lover fold the wing mirrors back… such a sexy image!

Andy delivered an image that continues to startle for its original link… the presence of the china doll so beautifully lets the seething air out of Nigel’s previous verse, and although seemingly fragile, has enough strength to keep hold of his hand.

Likewise, Chloe’s link startles for its originality… the image of a bite wrapped in a scarf has a searing beauty and again adds a passionate dimension to the previous poem.

Cindy fills us with a heartbroken longing as we stand, completely empty, on the shore. Love can be a desolate place sometimes…

Miguel gives us two poems that bristle with the urgency of love… one exhaling a name in a cloud of steam and the other exploding from the lips.

Mal also gives us two poems, one of which playfully connects two hands as the change is fumbled and the other which strips things to bare metal.

And finally Jonathan maintains his gentle sense of playfulness, shaving once for work and once for his lover.

As you can see, there are many links here that I myself have fallen for… But to progress the poem, I must choose. So for link #10, I welcome Andy and his china doll into the poem.

This means that link #11 is now open for submission – 3 lines, keeping with the theme of love. So let’s keep the passion, and make this poem burn bright to its very end.

Look forward to you all taking the leap!

*****

My Aching Back: Shisan
Started: 15 May 2013 – Finished:
Written between: Matt Hetherington, Lyndon Norton, Ashley Capes, Lee-Anne Davie, Chris Lynch, Mal Keeble, Chloe Callistemon, John Wainwright, Nigel Ellis, Andy Smerdon,

Side 1jo – preface

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku (autumn)

my aching back
a leaf falls
from a branch

(Matt Hetherington)

Link #2 (2 lines) – wakiku (autumn)

as I put down the rake
the sky darkens

(Lyndon Norton)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan (non seasonal)

in the shed
removing a dropcloth
from old paintings

(Ashley Capes)

Side 2ha part one – development

Link #4 (2 lines) – winter  moon

gravy smears the dinner plate
winter moon

(Lee-Anne Davie)

Link #5 (3 lines) – non seasonal

I regret
the light switch
cockroaches

(Chris Lynch)

Link #6 (2 lines) – non seasonal

the old dog dreams
of the chase

(Mal Keeble)

Side 3ha part two – intensification

Link #7 (3 lines) – spring blossom

the puppy
pisses on all
the daffodils

(Chloe Callistemon)

Link #8 (2 lines) – spring

spring shower
yolk burst on the tongue

(John Wainwright)

Link #9 (3 lines) – non seasonal

behind teeth
a storm gathers
I cannot swallow this

(Nigel Ellis)

Side 4kyu – finale

Link #10 (2 lines)- non seasonal, love verse

china doll
still holding hands

(Andy Smerdon)

Link #11 (3 lines) – non seasonal, love verse
Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku (summer)

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Shisan: My Aching Back (Links #9 – #10)

What a rush of poems Link #9 has unlocked… 13 poems from 9 poets, each of them with the ability to take the poem by the scruff of the neck and change its course forever.

So many of the images here startle on first reading – Carly’s ‘cigarette mouth’ slaps the senses good and proper; Cindy’s ‘head on collision’ shakes the entire body; and Nigel’s ‘behind teeth’ seethes with the rage of a whole season’s storms.

Other poems creep up on you – Carly’s ‘I look to the husband’ settles with a slow weight; Andrew’s ‘aaaahhhh’ is delightfully sonorous; Lyndon’s ‘filtered sunlight’ holds you in its claustrophobia; Andy’s ‘broken shell’ reveals a subtle pattern, Miguel’s ‘skeleton’ sings an unsettling song; and Mal’s ‘river’ rusts our dreams.

Some poems such as John’s ‘Stonehenge’ have a boldness, a willingness to experiment with form and content.

A fine pool of poems to dive into… so just which poem did I bring to the surface to become the next pearl in our shisan?

It was a tough decision… in my head I have been juggling three poems: Carly’s ‘I look to the husband’, Cindy’s ‘recalling’ and Nigel’s ‘behind teeth’, but in the end, the intensity of ‘behind teeth’ won me over.

Thank you to everyone for your poems; they are the engine that drives this poem.

Now we move into the final phase… So let’s open the call for Link #10. This time we are looking for 2 lines that bristle with love.

I am looking forward to the passion of these verses.

 

*****

My Aching Back: Shisan
Started: 15 May 2013 – Finished:
Written between: Matt Hetherington, Lyndon Norton, Ashley Capes, Lee-Anne Davie, Chris Lynch, Mal Keeble, Chloe Callistemon, John Wainwright, Nigel Ellis,

Side 1jo – preface

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku (autumn)

my aching back
a leaf falls
from a branch

(Matt Hetherington)

Link #2 (2 lines) – wakiku (autumn)

as I put down the rake
the sky darkens

(Lyndon Norton)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan (non seasonal)

in the shed
removing a dropcloth
from old paintings

(Ashley Capes)

Side 2ha part one – development

Link #4 (2 lines) – winter  moon

gravy smears the dinner plate
winter moon

(Lee-Anne Davie)

Link #5 (3 lines) – non seasonal

I regret
the light switch
cockroaches

(Chris Lynch)

Link #6 (2 lines) – non seasonal

the old dog dreams
of the chase

(Mal Keeble)

Side 3ha part two – intensification

Link #7 (3 lines) – spring blossom

the puppy
pisses on all
the daffodils

(Chloe Callistemon)

Link #8 (2 lines) – spring

spring shower
yolk burst on the tongue

(John Wainwright)

Link #9 (3 lines) – non seasonal

behind teeth
a storm gathers
I cannot swallow this

(Nigel Ellis)

Side 4kyu – finale

Link #10 (2 lines)- non seasonal, love verse
Link #11 (3 lines) – non seasonal, love verse
Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku (summer)

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SpeedPoets fills your Easter with words

SpeedPoets is gearing up to bring the words to The Hideaway this Easter Saturday from 1:30pm, and we have a sexy new poster to help spread the word!

sp

As part of the March gig, we are launching two brilliant new collections, haematograms by Nigel Ellis (aka Bruce Dorlova) and Confessional Box by Vanessa Page. Here’s what I had to say about each book:

“Confessional Box maps the undulating landscapes of home, love and letting go. Page’s poems are sensuous, compassionate and filled with quiet wisdom; they are a celebration of the world’s infinite gifts.”

“haematograms reaches into the tight corners of the mind to seize instants of clarity. Ellis is unique in his knowing, sharpest when catching things that he knows won’t last. This is an impressive debut, one where the charm of the ordinary and the mysterious collide; where the reader is transported into the poet’s other-world to walk the edge of his imagining.”

So, if you are anywhere near Brisbane, tuck a poem or three in your pocket and come along. All readers in Open Mic Section are automatically in the running to be named Call-Back-Poet for the month. Each Call-Back-Poet earns themselves a feature spot at the final gig for the year in November as well as the opportunity to win cash prizes and be named SpeedPoets Open Mic Champion for 2013.

Hope to see you all there…

Date: Saturday March 30
Venue: The Hideaway, 188 Brunswick St, Fortitude Valley
Time: Doors at 1:30pm for a 2pm Open Mic Start
Entry: Gold Coin Donation

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The Next Big Thing(s) – Vanessa Page & Nigel Ellis

2013 has some exciting releases about to drop, two of which, are the debut, full-length collections from Vanessa Page and Nigel Ellis.

Vanessa-Page

Vanessa released the micro-collection, Feeding Paper Tigers last year as part of Brisbane New Voices III and will follow this up with the launch of her collection, Confessional Box (Walleah Press) in February this year.

You can read all of Vanessa’s responses to The Next Big Thing interview on her blog, but here’s a preview to send you on your way…

What is the title of your book?

Confessional Box

What genre does your book fall under?

Poetry

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?

I’d say poems about love, loss and hope in domestic and Queensland-based settings. But my friends Brett Dionysius and Graham Nunn say this a little more eloquently:

“Confessional Box maps the undulating landscapes of home, love and letting go. Page’s poems are sensuous, compassionate and filled with quiet wisdom; they are a celebration of the world’s infinite gifts.” – Graham Nunn

“Page’s poems are growth rings in the tree of human experience. Like the embodied moment, these are poems to run your hands over and remember how they felt. Page’s sensual poems are a fine addition to the contemporary Australian lyric.” — B. R. Dionysius

*****

Nigel has been an essential part of the Brisbane poetry community for many years, so this is a release I have been anticipating for sometime.

Nigel Ellis

Nigel also responded to The Next Big Thing interview and this is what he had to say:

What is the title of your book?

Hæmatograms

What genre does your book fall under?

Poetry

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

It’s a work of reportage – an exploration of the surging currents & deadly undertows of intimate relationships, peppered with attempts to understand, delineate, & in some ways even construct a self

Where did the idea come from for the book?

The very lovely very brave Dale Winslow of Neopoiesis Press suggested that i publish a collection, & encouraged me to overcome my big-match nerves.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

The book is a collection of around 45 poems from the last 5 or more years.  The tricky part was choosing works to include that would enable the creation of some kind of loose narrative thread, or threads.  It was roughly two years from initial discussions to finished product.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Recent years have brought all kinds of profound shifts, reversals, advances, & so on, in my personal circumstances.   The constant but largely subconscious process of constructing & maintaining interpersonal relationships & self-identity that we all perform as, in whatever ways, we narrate our own lives, has been thrown into sharp focus for me.  The primacy of languages, and how we may and do use them, inspires my every word-choice.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

The book is published by the US-based Neopoiesis Press; a young & vibrant independent publisher.  A few years ago, some poems of mine were included in the anthology that was their first-ever publication.  Although they’re very small, It’s great to be able to hook into their network and resources.

What other works would you compare this book to within your genre?

I’m letting this one through to the keeper.

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

Sheesh!
uUMmmm…  Harold Lloyd?  The entire cast of Fantastic Voyage?

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

As far as I can tell, my coinage of the word ‘hæmatogram’ (writing in/with blood) is, outside of obscure medical terminology, original & so far, unique.

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