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Books & Poetry

Poem: From the Torrens Weir

Books & Poetry

In this week’s Poet’s Corner, Linda Kohler shares one of a suite of poems written in response to paintings by Adelaide artist Priscilla Corbell-Moore.

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From the Torrens Weir

On Karrawirra Parri, Red Gum Forest River

The forest has a new cliff
and waterfall,
new perch along the clifftop
with constellations

on poles – lower down, these new stars –
they dip pale lizards into the water
at night.

The forest has new box canopies
with glass leaves,
steel branches for crossing the river,
cement tracks, now;
swamp rats and house mice

a new flourish
on the banks,

old ambers and reds
still picnic
in the bed:

there are new paddlers
in the summer – bright
pedalled turtle shells, splashing
in time.

The forest has new songs.
You can hear the old ones
if you forage three a.m. and think
of yabbies.

From the weir, looking further,

the forest has a fountain

it’s on the forest river with the red gums,
in the red gums, surging with daily eternity
from the heartwood.

Linda Kohler lives in Adelaide but grew up knowing rivers: on a fruit block outside of Renmark. Variously a highly commended applicant for the Australian Society of Authors Poetry Mentorship Program, a waitress, television scriptwriter, proofreader and teacher, her poetry has been published in Australian journals and anthologies and previously in Poet’s Corner. Her poem today is from a suite written in reflection on paintings by the Adelaide artist Priscilla Corbell-Moore, whose solo exhibition ‘Art for a Cause: Poetry & Paintings’ was held at Adelaide’s Pilgrim Uniting Church last month; Linda read her poems at the exhibition opening.

Torrens Weir North West, by Priscilla Corbell-Moore.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems of up to 40 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to Submissions should be in the body of the email, not as attachments. A poetry book will be awarded to each accepted contributor.
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