The title of Joanne Burns' new collection brush
highlights the reader's first experience of a poem, its initial
electricity; and the way the poem offers a surface of words that proceeds to reveal their possibilities or
The central sequence 'road' is an animated display of the fashions
of being in contemporary life - these poems are cheeky, playful, mercurial,
Then there is the sequence called 'bluff', which excoriates twenty-first
century financial culture with bite, hilarity and a sense of the absurd.
is a section devoted to personal memoir, including a five-part poem featuring Bondi
beach, and a suite of memory fragments depicting twentieth-century modes of travel.
final group of poems, 'wooing the owl (or the great sleep forward)', explores the night, sleep and dreams, with their strange
tones and surprising perspectives.
There are 80 poems in the collection, most of
them short, stressing the compressed pleasure that only poetry can offer.