New Junicho: Bewteen Thistles (Links #4 – #6)

Responses to Link #6:

At the half-way mark of Between Thistles and the momentum is building. Seven links to read and enjoy for link #6; seven bursts of artistic flair, seven distinct paths for the poem to travel, so let’s take a look at where we could leap.

Chris opens with a rush, ‘blasting the sky with trees’ in the style of Bill Robinson, before stilling the image with the word ‘okay’, allowing us to settle into our own memories beside him;  John draws on Caravaggio’s extraordinary use of light to reveal what appears to be a pallet knife (another of Caravaggio’s preferred tools) and the vision of Mary as a whore; Chloe takes us on a journey through the human interior… in reading the poem I could hear the beat of her footsteps, in time with her pulse and the many pulses of the incandescent hearts; she also delivers the wonderfully quirky image of glass bowels; Rachael offers us a wickedly playful take on Goya’s, ‘Saturn Devouring His Son‘; Phillip revisits the urinal in Duchamp’s scandalous work, ‘Fountain‘; Cindy (via Banksy) allows the natural beauty of a pond covered in waterlillies to collide with a shopping trolley; and Lee-Anne turn’s up the volume on the light in every stroke Van Gogh made.

Such an incredible group of poems! Thank you so much everyone for making this such a joy! This time, I truly struggled to make a single leap… I have gone back and forth between three poems in particular, but it is time to make a choice…

So from the moth seeking darkness we fade back into the light via Caravaggio and his pallet knife. John, you are now locked in for link #6, which means the call is open for link #7 – 3 lines with a reference to religion.

All are welcome to take the leap,



Between Thistles: A New Junicho
Started: 12 April 2013 – Finished:
Written between:
Ashley Capes, Simon Kindt, Chloe Callistemon, Chris Lynch, Trish Reid, John Wainwright

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku / shasei

between thistles
the crane’s
Egyptian walk

(Ashley Capes)

Link #2 (2 lines) – waki / cultural (literature)

the noose of a circling skein
called down by Carver’s barreled goose

(Simon Kindt)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan / cultural (film)

fan rotors beat
The End
to the smell of napalm

(Chloe Callistemon)

Link #4 (2 lines) – verse / shasei

recycling at 2:30am
moonlight on bitumen

(Chris Lynch)

Link #5 (3 lines) – verse / shasei

moth seeks out
only dark spaces
tired I turn off the light

(Trish Reid)

Link #6 (2 lines) – verse / cultural (art)

Caravaggio fades in from black
is that a pallet knife?

(John Wainwright)

Link #7 (3 lines) – verse / cultural (religion)
Link #8 (2 lines) – verse / gendai
Link #9 (3 lines) – verse / gendai
Link #10 (2 lines) – verse / cultural (politics)
Link #11 (3 lines) – verse / cultural (music)
Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku / shasei

* shasei – sketched from life – lived experience, observational, uncontrived.
* gendai – modernist – atypical structure, tone or content.


Responses to Link #5:

It was wonderful to read some new and returning voices and their offerings for Link #5. These links offer many exciting possibilities.

Phillip took us from the bitumen to the ocean, which gives the poem a fresh setting; the slow movement that permeates Simon’s poem drew me back to it several times… ‘night’s edge frays’ and ‘we move like smoke’ are rich, rich images; I was drawn to the moth in Trish’s poem and its search for darkness. The moth’s movement is given even greater energy as the poet turns out the light, offering the moth new territory to explore; Rachael sees the hint of a dollar coin in a possum’s eyes and in doing so brings us face to face with this nocturnal adventurer; Lee-Anne revisits the recent devastation in Boston then leaves the natural wonder of lightning to strike us; and Cindy has us tossing and turning with a single thought (something I am sure we all can relate to…) as well as offering a wonderful image that rings with the thunder of possums… so very Brisbane!

It is rich pickings, which makes the task even more exciting! For link #5, I have followed the moth into the darkness and in doing so welcome Trish into ‘Between Thistles’.

That means we are now seeking link #6 – 2 lines with a reference to art / an artist.

Leap boldly!


Responses to Link #4:

It’s time to make a decision about which poem will take the position of link #4 in Between Thistles. Four fine submissions, four poems that would again lead us in  unique directions.

John leaps from the smell of napalm to the burnt remains of a man (‘his ashes’) which slaps the senses in a good way.  And that second line… ‘close to the road that ran through his life’ adds a sense of weight to the loss and has the potential to lead the poem on a road of discovery.

Chris’s leap from the smell of napalm to recycling made me smile widely… it reminds as all that in the face of disaster, life goes on… and again the bitumen is there, lending its blackness to the image.

Phillip’s leap from the smell of napalm to the Gold Coast also made me smile… such a naturally beautiful place, made so ugly by our own hand. And the opening image of ‘summer showers’ gave the poem a cleansing feel.

And finally Andrew’s leap from the smell of napalm to falling out of a dream, resonated deep in the pit of my stomach. I could feel the bottom dropping out as the thunder cracked and the sweat soaked through.

So which way did I leap?

In the end, I went with Chris’s ‘recycling at 2:30am’… so jump on that bitumen and leap off into link #5. We are now looking for 3 lines – an image sketched from lived experience.

Spread the word!


Filed under poetry

27 responses to “New Junicho: Bewteen Thistles (Links #4 – #6)

  1. phillipaellis1968

    Link #5:
    and streetlights
    escarpment and ocean

  2. Simon Kindt

    Link #5

    the night’s edge frays across the sky
    fires are lit
    and we move like smoke

  3. patricia reid

    link 5

    moth seeks out
    only dark spaces
    tired I turn off the light

  4. Rachael Briggs

    I bend toward the bushes
    the hint of a dollar coin
    possum eyes flash

  5. ladpoetry

    Hi G

    Trying my hand

    explosions erupt a sobering event lightning strikes

    cheers Lee

    Sent from my iPhone

  6. sleepless night
    tossing and turning
    the same thought


    possums on the roof
    a sudden clap
    of thunder

  7. Love the possum one, Cindy.

    Link #6

    Bill Robinson blasts the sky with trees
    okay, in the gallery, with my memories

  8. Link # 6

    Caravaggio fades in from black
    Is that a pallet knife?


    Caravaggio’s Mary is a whore
    Cardinals know

  9. Because I have the flipsides of MONA on my mind:


    I follow my pulse
    into a room of incandescent hearts

    deep in sandstone
    glass bowels

  10. Rachael Briggs

    Link #6:

    bad Saturn! put it down!
    Goya should paint a bell on him

  11. phillipaellis1968

    link #6:

    light signs the urinal
    R. Mutt

  12. Link # 6 ( banksy inspired)

    amongst the waterlillies
    a shopping trolley

  13. ladpoetry

    Van Gogh hears
    the light in each stroke

  14. Vuong Pham

    Link # 7

    soft dawnlight
    right on time
    for the “peace be with you”

  15. Vuong Pham

    Link # 7

    winter solitude
    the garden angel
    frost covered

  16. Vuong Pham

    Link # 7

    searching for truth–
    a loose page from the Bible
    lifts in the breeze

  17. Link #7

    the old jizo ignores
    his red beanie

  18. phillipaellis1968

    the blind watchmaker
    is silent
    to human prayers

  19. phillipaellis1968

    oops: forgot to add: link #7 😦

  20. link #7

    I know that I believe
    I know that I believe I know
    I know! I’ll have a little drink

  21. Rachael Briggs

    Link #7
    drifting during mass
    her sharp elbow in my side
    still I doubt

  22. Link #7
    now deaf men
    sign their cries
    sound of breaking stone

  23. ladpoetry

    he makes the sign
    with crossed fingers

  24. foggy mountain trail
    sherpa’s guide
    by prayer flags

  25. #7

    the dog
    tears up the holy book
    without reading it

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