Between Thistles: Variation #4 by John Wainwright

After Chloe’s exploration of humour in variation #3, John has countered with an exploration of  the darker moments the poem conjured. While the first half of the poem is similar to the original, the second half breaks new ground and shifts the tome of the poem dramatically. And as John so aptly pointed out in his email to me, ‘Andy’s three word verse (link #10) is a statement covering a decade and the full spectrum of Australian politics’.

So much to enjoy here…


Between Thistles: A New Junicho
Started: 12 April 2013 – Finished: 30 April 2013
Written between: Ashley Capes, Chloë Callistemon, Cindy Keong, Chris Lynch, John Wainwright, Andrew Phillips, Rachael Briggs, Andy Smerdon, Lee-Anne Davie, Trish Reid

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku / shasei

between thistles
the crane’s
Egyptian walk

(Ashley Capes)

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

she hushes the bundle
in a river basket

(Andrew Phillips)

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)

he makes the sign
with crossed fingers

(Lee-Anne Davie)

Link #8 (2 lines) – verse / gendai

a bouquet of verbs

(Cindy Keong)

Link #9 (3 lines) – verse / gendai

floods and locusts
here come the horsemen
swine flew

(Rachael Briggs)

Link #10 (2 lines) – verse / cultural (politics)

opportunity drifts

(Andy Smerdon)

Link #11 (3 lines) – verse / cultural (music)

bind your soul
to the beast that waits
at the crossroads

(Andy Smerdon)

Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku / shasei

in rifle sight
my enemy’s eyes

(Chris Lynch)


Filed under poetry

3 responses to “Between Thistles: Variation #4 by John Wainwright

  1. A most interesting experiment as the links change so does the tone of the poem…you’ve got me studying the form a bit more.

  2. This has been a most inventive conversation.

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