Monday, February 21, 2011

30 POEMS FROM THE GHINKO : Sunday 20th February 2011 : Williamstown Beach

Melbourne summer beach
Rain & Clouds
The seasons move south.

The ancient tradition of Haiku
Now in Australia
Four poets meet.

Cold wind
Outside the cafe
A dog waits

Wind & rain bend trees
The car Park
Where we used to meet

On a wild day
The old baths in the waves
All at sea

Seven distinct shades of green
In this cold and wind I paint in my mind
Just leaves

Under this tar
And before the cars – just sand
And an absent people

Sanpellergrino limonata
You bring your peace
To the red star cafe

White castle on a grey line
The ship on the horizon

Bring me your poor
Your huddled seagulls

Grey clouds sea and tar
On the road
The red car

Windy washed sheets
Banging on the modern window glass

Tiny forest in the park

Traffic divider
Like a grave

Williamstown Lacrosse Club
A red ball
Rolls the grass

Such a strong wind
Magpies chat on the deck
Out the back

Lighter and butt
Cohabit the grass
A dying breed

The ship of the old baths is beached
No more swimmers

Christmas is gone
The trees still wrapped in plastic

Nothing but wind in the trees
Then high up
A jet

Australian summer park
Above the succulents
Spiky palms

A boab in Williamstown
No noticeable enlightenment

The urban boab
More space for graffiti

A single boab in a desert of green

The boab remembers centuries
The graffiti
Written by teenage goldfish

Green grey green yellow brown shade
My eyes go back to their starting point
In the gardens

A fig
A long way
From Moreton bay

White statue on a plinth
One history, one life
Five lines

Outside the restaurant
Blue chairs, white tables
Black & white umbrella trees
By Schweppes

Old man, young girl
Good luck.


Thursday, February 17, 2011

THE MESSENGER, by Yannick Haenel, interviewed by Mark Baker.

Last night I attended an Interview with Yannick Haenel, author of THE MESSENGER, Text Publishing, 2011 at The Wheeler Centre in Melbourne, Australia. This first edition in the world to be published in English was translated from the original French (2009) by Ian Monk. The Interview was conducted by Mark Baker, Director of the Australian Centre for Jewish Civilisation and Associate Professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Monash University. I found this a staggeringly moving interview for a staggeringly moving book. The book is available from Readings and all good bookstores, as they say.

“Who bears witness for the witness?” This quote from the French Poet Paul Celan, opens this extraordinary, important and fundamentally moving book. The answer of course is: the writers, the poets, the composers, the musicians, the sculptors the visual artists and anyone who speaks where one or more are gathered, and who speaks the truth, not just of themselves, but of those who are gone and who are unable, except through such a process, to speak for themselves.

I have spoke elsewhere*, of the therapeutic importance of bearing witness for those who have been traumatised by violence, abuse or rape. As have other therapists, such as Paul Gibney* (Australia) and Alice Miller* (America). This book, is such an act of witnessing. Its publication will be controversial. It is faction; a combination of the reporting of the facts of the life of the man charged by the Polish Jewish people in exile with carrying the horrifying testament of what was happening to the Jews of Europe to world leaders of the time, such as Roosevelt, and others, any, who might listen; and fictional recreation of conversations we can not have heard and a reporting of the film of the man who was the messenger long after the war had ended and the asking of the question why his message was not apparently heard, or if heard, not acted upon

* Walker, L. (1997, 1998, 1999, 2003), Melanie Klein’s Concept of Reparation and Its Use in the Counselling of Clients who have Suffered Significant Abuse in their Past, Paper delivered at the Australian National Family Therapy Conference, 24th - 26th September 1997, Adelaide, South Australia. The author was invited to present this paper again as a Professional Development Paper for The Victorian Association of Family Therapists and it was delivered on June 23rd 1998 at the Monash Community Health Centre.

The author has since presented an updated and augmented version of the paper to the first Psychotherapy In Australia Conference held at Dallas Brooks Hall in Melbourne on Friday 2nd July 1999.

* Gibney, P. (1993), The Relative Truth and/or the Truth about Relatives: Freud, Masson and the Constructivist/Narrative Model of Therapy. Unpublished paper delivered at the Australian and New Zealand Family Therapy Conference, Canberra, Wednesday, 7th July.

* Miller, A. (1991), Banished Knowledge : Facing Childhood Injuries. London, Virago Press.

Throw your arms around me (Eddie Vedder & Mark Seymour) Pearl Jam

If i could tell you, Poetry by W.H. Auden.wmv

Saturday, February 12, 2011

THE ME & JULIAN MYTH: Come on guys, this is just a little silly. Yes Julian and I are both from Townsville. Yes we probably attended the same High School (however as I am twenty years older than he you would be what the lawyers colloquially term drawing a long bow to claim any connection here). Yes we were in Sydney and Melbourne at around the same time. Anything further is just getting silly as the Monty Python Team would say. I have been a registered psychologist in the state of Victoria for the last decade and to discuss any of my clients or patients openly would be a clear breach of my ethical responsibilities – regardless of their celebrity status (or lack of it). I would be as happy as the next person to claim celebrity by association if there were any basis for it. In this case I’m afraid, there is none.


Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Les Murray in Melbourne...briefly...

Spent a lovely half hour with Les Murray yesterday, chatting under a tree outside Readings in Carlton, Melbourne. Affable, wry, self-depreciating, generous. Soory I won't get to hear him read on this trip down but will treasure the memory of the twinkling chat. Monday 7th February 2011.


Tuesday, February 01, 2011