Book Review—Danged Black Thing by Eugen Bacon

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by Nicolas Brasch

Eugen Bacon is a critical voice in Australian literature, one that probes and prods, questions and enlightens. She is an extraordinary poet, and while Danged Black Thing is a collection of short stories, the poet’s voice shines throughout.

This collection traverses emotional, spiritual and geographical landscapes, providing insights into the author’s mind and background. It reaches back into her life and those of others, from cultures and lands both familiar and unfamiliar, at least to many of us.

But as intriguing and valuable as that is, the real beauty in this work is the language. Every sentence, and I mean every sentence, evokes senses and spirit. As I’ve mentioned, the poet’s dab hand is everywhere, as are influences: African and Persian storytelling, magic realism and contemporary western literature. The result is a cornucopia of ideas from an imagination rich and rare.