Fat Lady Japan


This is the other side of the Beach Blanket secret mixter. Calling Sister Midnight drew the short straw – me. She chose my reading of One Fat Lady (originally ‘octophobia’ in my phobiaphobia collection) made it grand opera and renamed it Fat Lady Japan. Grandiose.

One Fat Lady/ Octophobia
2 is fine.
Even squared.
Cubed is out of the question.
Bingo! The quaking begins.
Even one fat lady is one too many.
She begins to sing
as infinity stands
on its

© rob walker (from phobiaphobia, Picaro Press, 2008)
“Calling Sister Midnight” is the DJ/production name for Melody Romancito, a nu-jazz, pop & blues singer out of Taos, New Mexico. Thanks Melody.



My thanks to Sandra Thibodeaux for publishing one of my poems, A Better World, on her poetry blog. Sandra, from Darwin, is touring Australia as a kind of Peripatetic Ambassador for Poetry in her role as Poet-in-Residence for Australian Poetry. I met her at one of the series of workshops she’s conducting around Australia (see “disturbing my poem”). She’s documenting her work (+ a few of the poets she’s met) on her blog. Another Adelaidean featured is the ever sensitive and honest poet Rachael Mead. There’ll be more added as Sandra continues her roadshow!

secret summer mixter


I’ve just had great fun with ccMixter’s Beach blanket secret mixter project. Participants were invited to produce something with a summer theme in secret collaboration with another artist somewhere on the planet. I was fortuitously allocated Clarence Simpson (I think he’s from Arkansas.) I chose his beautiful but simple guitar arpeggio C minor and wrote a memoir of my Australian summers of childhood at West Beach then blended them with coastal sound FX and a basic chorus. I was pretty pleased with the result – and judging by the feedback a lot of other people appreciated it. I was concerned that a US audience might not “get” the Aussie idioms & references but no one’s complained. I guess it’s like poetry – if you’re honest and very specific it often touches a universal chord…

back on the block

Thanks to everyone who came along to our amazing Max-Mo gig at Higher Ground on Friday night. A great reunion with Amelia, fresh back from the Netherlands. If you weren’t there, as well as live versions of the tracks on our MySpace page, we did new material as well: Mike Ladd’s Ghost of Don Dunstan, Boomer Beach and Control Room and my The Thoughts of Charlie Sheen and Your Horrorscope. Great percussion layering by Andy Mills and some fantastic improvisational interplay between Derek Pascoe (sax) and Steve Matters (trombone) was the icing on the cake. After the show I got to chat to two of my favourite Adelaide poets Jules Leigh Koch & Aidan Coleman. Jules was kind enough to give me a copy of his marvellous Language of Rain collection (published by Rob Scott’s Bookends). Being a new dad, Aidan hasn’t seen much live poetry lately (although he’s also about to give birth to a poetry-baby courtesy of his publisher Brandl & Schlesinger.)
A wonderful time was had by all. See you next time.