Hooray for Alec Patric! His book ‘Black Rock White City’ just won the Miles Franklin Award for best book. And that is a big ole deal, as it’s Australia’s premier literary prize, and is worth a whopping $60,000 AUD. Not bad for a man who works in a St Kilda book store and struggled to get published.
I gave the book five stars on Goodreads back in June 2015—click on the link to read my review.
And, after meeting Alec in Melbourne, we had a lovely, long conversation over email. Click on the link to read some wonderful insights into a writer’s mind.
She eventually married an English country squire and lived the kind of life unimaginable to her as a girl. All the while she is focussed on preserving and promoting traditional Maori culture, using this as her thesis topic for anthropology studies at Oxford University in 1926, although she died in 1930 before it was published (it was published eight years later by a friend).
No wonder David Andrews was (clearly) fascinated by his subject. I am grateful to him for researching, collating and preserving Papakura’s story for future generations. He travelled far and wide and spent a lot of money piecing together her life. However, the writing often rambles and is repetitive, and the entire book is in need of a thorough edit. Don’t get me started on the random spaces before commas and other layout issues! Continue reading
Nederlands Dans Theater at The Civic Theatre, Auckland, New Zealand, 29 July 2016
Safe as Houses
Darkness and light
Shadow and illumination
Incogitable strength cranes limbs
A life in the hinge of an ankle
The vanishing ballet.
Woke up Blind
An entire dance to one haunting, lingering Jeff Buckley note
“Burning holes with eyes of liquid brown”
Pulling and pushing
Hissing angry copulating frenzied love
Trapped inside the mind
Breakdown in communication
Together again. Alone.
He’s here from upstairs.
Dancers slide and drip over the
The ability to proliferate conflict
light years away, from the
safety of the boardroom table.
Traitorous switched roles
Rapture and torment
Upstairs, and beneath a table.
A decision made?