Sorcerers and Soothsayers

Poets are the sorcerers and soothsayers of today. With their
creative and skilful use of words they weave their magic,
cast their spells and re-enchant our world. With their insight
they alert us to portents, sharpen our awareness of what
makes us human and envision for us a hopeful future.

So say John Pfitzner and Tracey Korsten, editors of Friendly Street’s 35th annual poetry reader which represents the best poetry read at Friendly Street’s monthly meetings (plus a number of regional events throughout South Australia) in 2010. Twenty of the 79 poets represented are FS ‘virgins’ which emphasizes Friendly Street’s commitment to publishing the best and encouraging emerging poets. It’s a long list, but I’m including everyone because I think poets aren’t acknowledged often enough in contemporary Australia and it’s especially significant if it’s your first poem in print.

So congratulations to David Adés, Gaetano Aiello, Kate Alder, Yahia Al-Samawy, Maeve Archibald, Henry Ashley-Brown, Avalanche, Elaine Barker, Bruce Bilney, Karen Blaylock, Belinda Broughton, Larry Buttrose, Julie Cahill, Karl H Cameron-Jackson, Aidan Coleman, Betty Collins, Dawn Colsey, David Cookson, David Cookson, Dorothy Cormack, Judy Dally, Sarah Daly, Kate Deller-Evans, Jo Dey, Jelena Dinic, Tess Driver, Andrew Ellery, M L Emmett, Steve Evans, Ian Gibbins, Jill Gower, Judith Haines, Simon Hanson, Lidija Šimkute, Bett Angel-Stawarz, Rob Hardy, Rory Harris, Alexander Hender, Mike Hopkins, Indigo, Geoff Johnston, Erica Jolly, Alan P Kelly, Sharon Kernot, Jules Leigh Koch, Tracey Korsten, Stephen Lawrence, Helen Lindstrom, Meryl McDougal, Margot McGovern, Louise McKenna, Keith MacNider, Gary MacRae, Kristin Martin, Deb Matthews-Zott, Rachael Mead, Jacqui Merckenschlager, Max Merckenschlager, Molly Murn, Graham Nunn, Susan O’Brien, Juliet A Paine, Anthony Parmee, John Pfitzner, Suzanne Reece, Philip Giles Reed, Royce, Ros Schulz, Veronica Shanks, Thom Sullivan, Athena Taylor, Jenny Toune, Valerie Volk, Maria Vouis, Julia Wakefield, G M Walker, Sarah Wauchope, Jill Wherry and Carmel Williams!

I was especially gratified to see the inclusion of two poems by Julia Wakefield (whom I had the honour of mentoring in 2010).

Thanks to John and Tracey for including two of my poems ‘A Better World’ and ‘Lines written in Himeji, 2008.’
[See here for Contents & Extract.]
The Wakefield Press book is launched officially at Friendly Street (the usual place) this Tuesday night from 7 pm.

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