NEW POETRY BY AIDAN COLEMAN, NEIL LEADBEATER, AND LUCAS MCMILLAN
AIDAN COLEMAN‘s two collections of poetry Avenues & Runways and Asymmetry were shortlisted for national awards in Australia, including the New South Wales Premier’s Kenneth Slessor Prize, the Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature and the Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards. His poetry has appeared in The Australian, Australian Book Review, Blackbox Manifold, Carolina Quarterly, Poetry Ireland Review, Virginia Quarterly Review and The Warwick Review. He teaches at the University of Adelaide and is a co-designer of the MOOC Shakespeare Matters for AdelaideX. With the assistance of an Australia Council grant Aidan is currently writing a biography of the Australian poet, John Forbes.
NEIL LEADBEATER is an author, essayist, poet and critic living in Edinburgh. His short stories and poems have been published widely both at home and abroad and translated into several languages including Dutch, Romanian and Spanish. His books include Librettos for the Black Madonna (White Adder Press, 2011), The Worcester Fragments (Original Plus, 2013) and The Loveliest Vein of Our Lives (Poetry Space, 2014). He is a regular reviewer for several journals including Galatea Resurrects (A Poetry Engagement) (USA) and Write Out Loud (UK).
LUCAS MCMILLAN is a student in the MFA program at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota. His work has appeared in The Oklahoma Review, Forge and Gravel Literary Journal.
Albums that are Summer
Kids negotiating sun and shade,
We pick through iTunes
like after Christmas.
The mind empty as a book
of sayings. You’d rather be
on a thatch pontoon
with a bunch of dickheads
according to the ad.
When the glass breaks
your chiding addresses the room,
knowing this an audition.
into a taxi and the plates
fall off. Tight blue
parents in the suburbs
of their constancy.
Pass yourself –
of aftershave –
a grappling hook
wedged in the thigh
of Mt Sumptuous.
Finding the River Horse
Finding the hippo in the chalk pit was surprising at first –
not a live one, of course, not
alive but one that had lain for centuries
resting in the dust.
According to experts, the pit itself
was not particularly fossiliferous
but demonstrably erosive.
If you want a lithological description
it was a silty glauconitic, micaceous marl
rich in coccoliths
with a basal concentration of phosphatized pebbles
so that you could trace through the greensand
sponges, corals, crustaceans,
reptiles and even birds –
small phosphatized turtle skulls
exquisite in their preservation
in the chalk basement beds…
but it was the hippo that claimed your attention –
the river horse whose massive bulk
is now reduced to this.
Rooftop in August, 2.30 A.M.
Prove to me the moon exists, she says,
in the middle of an argument about faith.
You can’t, so you put your hand in the small of her back
and pull her across the blanket
to kiss her, deeply,
not because you’re overcome by the thought
but because you want her to stop pulling at threads
of what’s real and what’s not.
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