Issue seven

Introducing issue 7 of Backstory.

by Tom Meagher. A yearning for freedom from both physical and ineffable barriers re-emerges throughout this issue of Backstory. Visible and...

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How and why we should rewrite the exclusion narratives of our world.

by Anne Connor   Picking up on the work of Jane Elliott, retired American teacher and racist educator, imagine the history of the...

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Facing the Music

by Moya Roddy.   Similimum, similimum. Like with like. Homeopathy works by releasing the body’s innate power to heal, a power...

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Review of Anne Casey’s ‘out of emptied cups’.

A kookaburra laughing carries me home through the clearing where the wattles are bursting their golden crowns dancing against a brooding...

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Book Review of Leah Kaminsky’s The Hollow Bones.

Reviewed by Angela Wauchop “… Herta’s eyes were open to an army of haters spinning their sticky threads among the populace. Every...

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AN ATTEMPTED ESCAPE

Port Arthur, Van Diemen’s Land, 1842 By Bill Cotter,   I slunk from black to grey and black again. Smelt the gum leaves. Felt the...

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Delivery

by Eleanor Hooker.  ...

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The Cool Beach

by Sven Doedens   Cameron slammed the door behind him. He didn’t slam it too hard because he knew he could damage the door, and then...

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If When

Reviewed by Brittney Alexander. “He had always been fond of knives. Each hilt sat warm and comfortable in the palm of his hand, as though...

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Feeling the Cold

by Moya Roddy   I told myself you didn’t feel the cold, out and about in tee shirts in all weathers. When the rest of us were...

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Mapping like all colonisers like to map

By Gareth Jenkins   An earlier version of this poem was a finalist in the 2016 Newcastle Poetry Prize and published under the title...

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Book Review of GS Johnston’s Sweet Bitter Cane

Reviewed by Angela Wauchop “The war had left them idle. Each bomb and bullet and bayonet had torn the fabric of the village to ribbons,...

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Swansong

by Wendy J. Dunn The nurse bends over Dad with her stethoscope and listens to his heartbeat. ‘Not long now,’ she mutters under her...

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The Darksome Bounds of a Failing World.

Reviewed by Brittney Alexander.   Gareth Russell’s book, The Darksome Bounds of a Failing World, addresses the sinking of the...

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THE “EARL CORNWALLIS”

By Bill Cotter, Between 1788 and 1840, twelve thousand women were transported, usually for minor offences, to New South Wales.   Oh,...

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Matrimonies

By Stuart Barnes     This poem was previously published in Glasshouses (UQP 2016)...

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no angel

By Magi Gibson   she was nine and half her milk teeth gone because she’d kissed the boys behind the shed And she listened in on big...

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TWO POEMS BY SULPICIA

Translated by Melinda Smith   V: From my sick bed Sulpicia 5 (Tibullus 3, 17)   Cerinthus, will you keep faith with your girl now...

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Recipes for the Disaster

Reviewed by Michael Aiken Gareth Jenkins’ Recipes for the Disaster (Five Islands 2019) reads like a series of rituals or incantations,...

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Richard James Allen

Interviewed by Samuel Elliott. Richard James Allen is an Australian born poet whose writinghas appeared widely in journals, anthologies,...

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ERNIE ECOB AS A BARE-BELLIED JOE

By Melinda Smith ‘Women only want to be shearers for the sex’ — Ernie Ecob, former Secretary, Australian Workers’ Union   She...

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safe hands

By Philip Porter,   She falls into her father’s arms from various heights: This was the light that held her darknesses from her....

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Tuam Lullaby

By Gary McCartney     Hush, Macushla, time to sleep The night is getting colder Pray the Lord your soul to keep For you’ll...

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Someone to talk to

by Wendy Wicks   She is standing in the doorway examining him. His eyes were still grey. She remembered when they first met. Those...

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Metamorphosis

By Anita Patel (in memory of Maria Sibylla Merian – 1647 -1717)   It is not natural for a young girl to gaze at insects night...

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Nigel Featherstone

by Samuel Elliott   About the author… Nigel Featherstone is an Australian writer who has been published widely. His works include...

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Jerilderie

By Nathanael O’Reilly   Eat a counter lunch of lamb shanks, salad and chips at the Royal Mail Hotel in the room where the Kelly...

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Cockle Picking

By Amanda Bell   Look first for an open cockle shell, spreadeagled on the damp part of the strand, then, with your fingers, form a...

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Woven in the Bone

By Audrey Molloy   And all this time, was anyone keeping account?      Light from Light, true God from true God, Child-years lost...

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As woman surface

By Ellen Shelley   You watch as shadows wear you as ink dries hard up inside the stone.   Tombs collapse with their dialect of...

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