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Poetry’s Community

Published: www.textjournal.com.au/april00/kelen
Citation: Kelen, C. Poetry’s Community (2000). Poetry’s Community. Text – Journal of Writing and Writing Courses, 4(1)

Abstract:

The paper examines the idea of community by means of its expression especially in modernist poetries. Theories of Bourdieu, Blanchot, Levinas, Lingis and especially Lyotard’s construct, the differend, are applied to the project of assessing the relationship between aesthetic practices and the communities in which they arise and which they make possible.

Jean Kent

Jean Kent was born in Chinchilla, Queensland, in 1951. She published her first poems in a literary magazine in 1970, while she was completing an Arts Degree (majoring in psychology) at the University of Queenslandl; her first collection, Verandahs, appeared twenty years later, in 1970.  Since then, another eight books of her poetry have been published. The most recent are The Hour of Silvered Mullet (Pitt Street Poetry, 2015) and Paris in my Pocket (PSP, 2016). 

Awards Jean has won include the Anne Elder Prize and Dame Mary Gilmore Award (both for Verandahs), the Wesley Michel Wright Prize, the Josephine Ulrick Prize and Somerset Prize. She has been a runner-up for the Newcastle Poetry Prize and winner of its Local Section, and was a judge of the prize in 2013. She has received several writing grants from the Australia Council, including Overseas Residencies in Paris in 1994 and 2011.

As well as writing poetry, fiction and (occasional) nonfiction, Jean has worked as an educational psychologist, counsellor in TAFE colleges, lecturer in Creative Writing, mentor and facilitator of poetry workshops.

With Kit Kelen, Jean was co-editor of A Slow Combusting Hymn: Poetry from and about Newcastle and the Hunter Region (ASM/Cerberus Press, Flying Island Books, 2014).

Her Flying Island pocket book is The Language of Light (2013), a selection of her poems with Chinese translations by Iris Fan Xing.

In 2020, Kit Kelen invited her to converse with him by email for his blog spot, The Daily Kit. Their conversation over six months, covering a lot of topics, including poetry, but also COVID19, the deaths of their mothers, gardening …

Jean lives at Lake Macquarie, NSW.

Links: jeankent.net

Flying Islands Pocket Poet Publications

The Language of Light

In National Library of Australia

Translation Iris Fan Xing

The Language of Light is a selection of poems from Jean Kent’s collections, with translations into Chinese by Iris Fan Xing. The poetry ranges from memories of childhood in country towns and on a farming property in Queensland to adult experiences visiting family in Lithuania and living in Paris. Scenes from everyday life, working as a psychologist, and at home in a bushy suburb at Lake Macquarie, NSW, also feature. Included are poems which won the Josephine Ulrick National Poetry Prize and the Dorothy Porter Prize.

Chan Lai Kuen 陳麗娟:亡星之城

Chan Lai Kuen (a.k.a. Dead Cat) was born in Hong Kong. She graduated from the Chinese University of Hong Kong with a degree in English, and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University (taken in Hong Kong) with a degree in Fine Art. Her book of poetry Were the Singing Cats (《有貓在歌唱》2010) was awarded Recommendation Prize of the 11th Hong Kong Biennial Awards for Chinese Literature. Prose collection Kyoto that Cannot be Reached (《不能抵達的京都》) was published in 2015. Bilingual poetry selection City of Dead Stars is published in 2014. Chan also creates works of visual art.

Flying Islands Pocket Poet Publications

City of Dead Stars

Odveig Klyve

Odveig Klyve (born 29 January 1954) is a Norwegian writer and film director.

Among her notable publications are Rift (poetry debut, 1993), Basunengelen (children’s book, 1997), Historien om Null (children’s book, 2003), Algebraisk (poetry, 2004), Det andre blikket (poetry, 2006), SterkestHistorien om Tre (children’s book, 2006) and Hemmeleg (children’s book, 2007). In total she has published seven poetry collections and eight children’s books. She has also translated work of the Iranian poet Forugh Farrokhzād, the Palestinian poet Fadwa Touqan and an English poet.

She has written and directed several short films, which have been invited to international festivals in France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Northern Ireland, England, Scotland, Romania, US and India. She has her education in literature, film and social studies.

She hails from Hardanger and now lives in Stavanger.

Flying Islands Pocket Poet Publications

Let’s Take the Blue Sky by Storm

S.K.Kelen

S. K. Kelen (Stephen Kenneth Kelen) is an Australian poet who enjoys hanging around the house philosophically and travelling. His works have been widely published in journals, ezines and newspapers, anthologies and in his books. Kelen’s oeuvre covers a diverse range of styles and subjects, and includes pastorals, satires, sonnets, odes, narratives, haiku, epics, idylls, horror stories, sci-fi, allegories, prophecies, politics, history, love poems, portraits, travel poems, memory, people and places, meditations and ecstasies. A volume of his new and selected poems was published in 2012. His most recent book of poems, A Happening in Hades, was published by Puncher & Wattmann in 2020.

Links: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S._K._Kelen

Flying Islands Pocket Poet Publications

Yonder Blue Wild

travel and places 1972 – 2017

Kit Kelen

Christopher (Kit) Kelen (客遠文) is a well-known Australian poet, scholar and visual artist, and Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Macau, where he taught Creative Writing and Literature for many years.

Kit Kelen’s poetry has been published and broadcast widely since the seventies, and he has won a number of prestigious awards over the years, including an ABA/ABC Bicentennial Prize in 1988; and in 1992 an Anne Elder award for his first volume of poems The Naming of the Harbour and the Trees. He has also won Westerly‘s Patricia Hackett Prize and placed second in Island’s Gwen Harwood Prize. In 2012, his poem ‘Time with the Sky’ was runner up in the Newcastle Poetry Prize, an award for which he has been frequently shortlisted. In 2017, Kit was shortlisted twice for the Montreal Poetry Prize and, for the second time, won the Local Award in the Newcastle Poetry Prize.

Volumes of Kit Kelen’s poetry have been published in Chinese, Portuguese, French, Italian, Spanish, Swedish, Indonesian and Filipino. The most recent of Kelen’s dozen English language poetry books are China Years – New and Selected Poems (2012, ASM/Flying Islands) and Scavenger’s Season (2014, Puncher and Wattmann). He also has a mini-selected poems in the form of A Pocket Kit. His next collection of poetry, Poor Man’s Coat – Hardanger Poems is being published by University of Western Australia Press in 2018.

The most recent of Kelen’s ten solo painting exhibitions were Next Stop is the Stars (Rui Cunha Foundation Gallery, Macao) in 2015; in 2016, Dotze Pinturas (Estudio Nomada, Barcelona); and in 2017, Kelen’s exhibition up through branches – por árvores acima – held at the SNBA (National Society of Fine Arts) Gallery in Lisbon.

For the last decade Kelen has been facilitating the translation of Chinese poetry into English and of Australian poets into Chinese, projects which have so far produced a dozen large scale bilingual anthologies. These projects involved bringing poets and translators to Australia (notably to Bundanon, the University of Western Australia, and Kelen’s Australian home) to workshop with poets being translated. They have likewise involved hosting poets for workshops and meetings in Macao, and elsewhere in China. Apart from parallel-text anthologies Kelen has notably co-translated two volumes with the late Hong Kong poet Leung Ping Kwan (Ya Si), and four with Macao poet Yao Jing Ming (Yao Feng).

Kit Kelen has also worked with poets and translators to co-translate and publish volumes of poetry from French, Norwegian and Indonesian. A 2012 volume, Notes for the Translators, collected the work of 142 Australian and New Zealand poets, together with advice from authors on how their particular works might be translated into any language.

As an editor and anthologist more generally, Kit Kelen has published the work of hundreds of poets from around the world, but especially from China and Australia.

In 2008, he co-edited with Agnes Vong the first English-language anthology of Macao poetry, containing the work of more than 120 Macao poets, some writing in English, many translated from Chinese and Portuguese. In 2009, his critical volume City of Poets – Exploring Macao Poetry Today appeared to accompany the 2008 anthology.

In Australia, A Slow Combusting Hymn (co-edited with Jean Kent, in 2014) collected the work of more than sixty Newcastle/Hunter-region associated poets. Writing to the Wire (co-edited with Dan Disney and published by UWAP in 2016) brought Australians poets and poets in Australian immigration detention together in a sustained meditation on the question of ethos and the meaning of nation in the case of Australia.

Nation and nationalism have been an abiding interest in Kit Kelen’s own poetry and in his literary research. With Björn Sundmark, Kelen has edited two major international collections on Children’s Literature – The Nation in Children’s Literature and Where Children Rule (both with Routledge). He is currently working on a monograph (under contract with Routledge) about poetry, children and anthropomorphism.

Kelen’s published research into national anthems dates back to the 1990s and he has written many articles on this subject. This work has culminated in the publication of two monographs – Anthem Quality – National Songs: A Theoretical Survey (2014, Intellect/University of Chicago Press) and (with A. Pavkovik) Anthems and the Making of Nation States – Identity and Nationalism in the Balkans (2016, I.B.Tauris).

Kit Kelen has also published a more general monograph on poetics: Poetry, Consciousness and Community (2009, Rodopi)

Kit Kelen is Series Editor for ASM/Flying Islands books and, in this role, has cultivated a pocket poets series, publishing writers in various languages from around the world, but especially from Australia and China. Kelen is also Literary Editor for Postcolonial Text.

Since 2016, Kelen has co-ordinated Project 366 – an international on-line community of practice, involving poets and visual artists in daily postings of draft work. As a participant in this project (originally intended to run only for the duration 2016) Kit has now posted a new draft poem to the blog every day for more than 800 days.

A new on-line collaboration among poets and artists A Conversation in Poetry has recently commenced (in 2018). Participants in this project – including many of Australia’s best-known poets) respond in kind to each others’ work, without any time limits.

Kit Kelen lives and works on a five-acre block, in a valley between forests, in the Myall Lakes district of New South Wales. He writes and paints every day.

In 2017, Professor Kelen was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Malmö, in Sweden.

Links: kitkelen.com

Flying Islands Pocket Poet Publications

Wake to Play: Poems in First Philosophy

trans Papa Osmubal (in National Library of Australia)

A Pocket Kit 2

In National Library of Australia

A Pocket Kit

In National Library of Australia

Common or Garden Poets – Post #1 – Kit Kelen inviting Jean Kent

secret no one can keep

 

for Jean Kent

 

 

and now everyone knows

 

it’s the longer light

the mud to life

(a theory once)

 

how dare

and flirt

 

first thing from the veranda

an orchestra tuning

instruments of bright

 

nor anything regular intended

feathers carry word (which isn’t)

 

insects cone up, gyre like motes

 

can’t help the odd paint splash now

flowers all put on a show

 

a riddle in the turning

how we could come to here

 

woody thickets of delve

where nectar

 

parrots in mandarin

brazen sneak

 

glimpse them wing it too

a rite?

 

commence thirst

 

near the zenith

throw cloud by shade

we seek 

and shield the eyes from glare

 

later in the day

burn off last winter piles

 

a season as ever

never before!

 

limber and spit

get your hands on it

 

try a little nakedness now

dance breeze

 

dusk dew welcome

 

it is a week premature perhaps

sprightly and soon sprawl

 

the secret is out

now it’s Spring!


kk

what shall we do nest year?

 

what shall we do nest year?

for Sarah St Vincent Welch

 

when every month’s of Sundays

and all the moons are blue

 

a peach blossom wild creek

tangle with ferns

 

we will live in a typographical error

and go to press that way

 

chorus of twig and leaf to prove

the birds beginning Spring  

poem in the fridge (for Sarah)

 

poem in the fridge

for Sarah St Vincent Welch

 

things opened are in here

the can of worms, the ointment fly

stool samples, acid trips, specimens

 

all sorts, oh and did I mention dinner?

voice says ‘we are your dead in here’

the feast preserved , slow cultures

 

cut off from nature

thing that could bite once

‘we go through your guts in time’

 

each packet bears its epitaph

and one day rise to justice?

dark thoughts when the door is shut

 

so all we meat must fear