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Reclusive Duck Woman. Artist. Writer. GR Refugee.

Currently reading

Popular Magic: Cunning-folk in English History
Owen Davies
Supernatural: Meetings with the Ancient Teachers of Mankind
Graham Hancock, Rick Strassman, Roy Watling
When Prophecy Fails: A Social and Psychological Study of a Modern Group that Predicted the Destruction of the World
Leon Festinger, Henry W. Riecken, Stanley Schachter
Madame Tussaud: and the History of Waxworks
Pamela M. Pilbeam

Karen Knight

Postcards from the Asylum - Karen Knight

"Postcards from the Asylum, Karen Knight's fifth poetry collection, won the Arts ACT 2007 Alec Bolton Award for an unpublished manuscript. These poems arise from her experiences as an inmate at the Royal Derwent Psychiatric Hospital (Tasmania) in 1969."

Each poem is perfect. Seriously. They are starkly disturbing, horribly emotive and achingly beautiful. You get the gist. I'm going to add a few of Karen's poems to my review, for others to get an idea of the style and content:

My First ECT

There are bars
on all the windows.
Nightingales come
with plug-in leads, metal
discs and thick rubber bands.

ECTs are fast and efficient;
just a small clamp between
the teeth, slight pressure
on the head, then out
into the airing court
a thorax of blue flame.

My singed eyebrows
suit me.

Hand Shadow a Guard Dog

When the Nightingales
turn out the light
and the dark,
dressed for the opera,
begins its smothering,

I summon my guard dog.

I fashion the fierce shape of him
with fingers and thumbs,
and leash him to the wall.

The moon strokes his dew claws.

He gets me through
another long
Kubrick night.

Missing Home

I'm at the window in my
get-me-out-of-here clothes

listening to a grand
piano's sob

tasting ripe nectarines
from my tree

watching a honeyeater suck
its shadow from a puddle

my cats are at the front gate
of the house I used to live in

I'm breaking ice
with my monochrome pen



Why Am I Here


As the springboard flips, I
Dive from the highway overpass.
Doctor says once a jumper, always.
In dreams I crash into bitumen rivers
Climb out of the pitch and sway
To the rush of the Doppler effect.
It's so amniotic.
Only a few more leaps, then Niagara.
No nets please, I'm the waterfall.