Kerri Shying is a poet of Wiradjuri and Chinese family, publishing across many journals and anthologies.
She is the author of a bilingual pocketbook of poems “sing out when you want me”,2017, Flying Island Press, “Elevensies”, 2018 Puncher and Wattman and “Knitting Mangrove Roots”2019, Flying Island Press.
Kerri held the Varuna Dr Eric Dark Flagship Fellowship for 2019 for her current collection ‘Know Your Country” 2020, Puncher and Wattman, and was shortlisted in 2017 for both the Helen Ann Bell Prize and the Noel Rowe Award.
Kerri has been convenor of Write Up for 5 years, a free arts/writing group for people living with disability.
She lives with disability in Newcastle, NSW with her famous dog Max Spangly.
Kerri is a nominee in https://theaspireawards.com.au 2020, an activity of the Human Rights Commission, for disability activism in the arts.
Speaking – Uncle Ray Kelly snr
what i’m doing today wishing i was with the bronze winged pigeon cousin
she’d make me laugh the hairless cats the dachshund made of ball bags pickled
grey pink asked her once if an animal with hair arrived at their place would they shave it
she made that face that went back years crossed the generations we are the arms
the legs the bodies mouths speaking gumar spilling laughter hiding feathers
Emptying tea leaves in autumn
this half moon golden stuck by mist along the nest side of the yucca tree night calls winter one quilt nestling animals grown indoor in weeks books and porridge talk to me from behind say its time for fire we’re waiting on the other side
Nothing like Nimbin
suffering the climate doesn’t lend itself to real hard scour for the poor see the bastards
loll about in board shorts growing veggies like the climate eggs them on a failure to participate is no great thing
the ferals like the old blokes say some in every town back out where the dairy farmers were before the soy
the nuts the milk that went the way of lard
I’ve been running round all week on the chase for how much heroin it takes to kill a normal person just try coming out with that and they say decency is dead
I wish it was you
before you get the wrong end of the stick in my own defence I have to say love is consensual the underclass could mind their business too
I’m knitting mangroves root by root surviving night and day the inrush of the tides i’m waterlogged I’m dry I’m all the decades of fringe sitting knitting and unwinding telling keeping secrets all the words destined to wash up this
kitchenette my laundry torn apart by crabs
sluiced to sea relying as I do on you the moon aiding and abetting sun if they can prove it so many other crimes I live between the heat the bats this under over day and night the leaves the tips the roots the air the water knitting all the time
you can disguise the way your past stinks fake a shallow grave just halve the normal depth so your decoy fuckwittery can be inserted as a gravel bed to divert a nose from sin guilt shame your belief that others ought not look your way again
you take the corpse of something small a crime of less significance classic is the body of a dog to hide the remnants of a man
let the finding of the one account for the stench of that it pains you to explain admit account for nothing
who digs deeper anyway