I’m thrilled to announce the publication of a new chapbook written in conjunction with my dear friend and stellar poet, Robbie Coburn. Scar to Scar was conceived when Robbie sent me a poem and I replied, in kind, with a poem I ‘found’ within his, re-ordering his original text as a form of poetic alchemy.
Our collaboration developed over the next few months, in part due to the impetus of Kit Kelen’s Project 365+1, which requires writers to publish a new poem every day for a month. Before we knew it, Robbie and I had enough poems to fill a small book, and so we did! The result is Scar to Scar, which has just been published by the excellent PressPress.
Thanks to Robbie for sharing his beautiful words with me, and to Chris Mansell, from PressPress, for publishing them. This book is very close to my heart and it’s wonderful to see it out in the world.
I’ll be doing an unofficial launch of Scar to Scar at The Wollongong Writers Festival this coming Sunday 27 November, as part of the Mad Poets Panel along with poets Tim Heffernan, Ariel Riveros Pavez, Alise Blayney, Phillip Page and David Stavanger. It should be an amazing afternoon of poetry and performance!
You can find out more about those events here and purchase Scar to Scar from PressPress here. And to whet your appetite, here are the original pair of poems which started it all…
sealed off and positioning the body
you watch the breath enter the stilled atmosphere.
along the blade poised
against your palm
where blood begins to run,
the framed nature of panic
the wound is only preservation, remember.
when the skin begins to fail
blood draped along the decayed bone-lines
a pulse will run along the nerve ends.
you corner the vein and drive the object in again
finding a point of collapse —
with the same impulse the passage will lead you back.
for a while the red painted on your arm
your body does not belong to you.
in this there is
the cry of my voice is enough
to collapse skin.
you cross a passage
the panic of blood
against blade along poised palm
my breath enters