Tag Archives: new poetry – Michelle Dicinoski

January Pin-Up Week #4 – Michelle Dicinoski on the art of reading

January is all but over, which means that this is the last time we will be checking in with our first Pin-Up Poet for 2012, Michelle Dicinoski. It’s been wonderful featuring Michelle’s work and I am already getting excited about our February Pin-Up. But for one last time, it’s over to Michelle!


You are one of the featured readers at the opening of The Back Room in February. How do you approach putting together a set of poems for a reading? Readings have become increasingly important in reaching new audiences. What do you hope to create for an audience when you are behind the mic?

I try to tailor my readings to the audience, if possible. But I do have favoured poems, ones that I think are better suited than others for reading aloud. How poems sound is extremely important to me: is there a rhythm that I can connect with onstage, a rhythm that I can use to draw the audience in? This focus on rhythm and pacing began years ago as a way of managing nerves and ensuring I had enough breath. But now it’s become a crucial part of how I read, and it seems to tie in with what and how I write. I haven’t really thought about this before, but a lot of my poems are about suspended moments (a lot of poems are), or swollen moments, and in readings I am trying to step outside time and inhabit the poem in a particular way. So what I am trying to create for the audience is a heightened sense of the poem, created partly through sound and pace, through rhythm and pauses.



These goose bumps are vestiges
like appendices, whale legs, the blind
eyes of salamanders—
reminders of bodies lost.
Which brings me back to you.

That night was all touch and wonder.
Your scapulae, sharp at my palms,
held shocks familiar and new.
Whoever was charged
with naming the bones
named them surely for you:
the sacred one, the little key,
the cuckoo beak, the spade.

Come back to me
in fifty thousand years and still
at the sight of your walk
something will beat in my blood
bat-winged and fierce
the pump of something ancient launching
something ancient coming home.


The Back Room at Confit Bistro (4/9 Doggett St, Fortitude Valley) opens its doors for 2012, showcasing the work of local visual artists, physical performers, musicians and poets. With the new Sunday timeslot stretching out from 4pm – 7pm, the poetry section will now feature a short Open Mic section, so if you have a poem or two folded in your pocket, make sure you come along. Spaces for the poetry Open Mic will be limited to 10 and names will be drawn from a hat on the day.

Poetry features for the opening event are January Pin-Up girl, Michelle Dicinoski and Lee-Anne Davie. There will also be live music from The Lucky Ones (feat. Sheish Money), visual art from Olivia Spohr and Tricia Reust and the live raunch of Ms BB Le Buff. And I will be there to keep the mic warm between features with the guitar swagger of Sheish Money to drive it all along.

And to celebrate the opening, Confit Bistro are giving away a breakfast for two. For your chance to win all you have to do is click….(http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Back-Room/170067313082905?ref=tn_tnmn) ….and ‘LIKE’ The Back Room. Winners will be announced at the event.

Date: Sunday February 26
Where: Confit Bistro, 4/9 Doggett St, Fortitude Valley
When: 3pm – 7pm
Entry: Free


Filed under events & opportunities, Pin Ups

January Pin-Up Week #3: new work from Michelle Dicinoski

Fridays… staying up late, the tinkle of gin on ice and Pin-Up-Poets… what could be better! This week we get a glimpse of some exciting new work from our January Pin-Up, Michelle Dicinoski.


I believe you have started some new work recently. Have any themes started to develop? And can you shed some light on how a poem happens for you…

I’ve been writing non-fiction almost exclusively for the last year or two, so it’s been difficult to start writing poems again. More difficult than I had hoped! I am just rediscovering my poetry process, and for me poems happen very slowly. Probably 95% of my writing is revision, so I will write something, and then revise numerous times, over months and sometimes years. But this year I am also hoping to shake up my approach a little, experiment more, and see what happens. It’s way too soon to talk about themes. But I have noticed that dreams and insects seem to be coming up a lot. God knows what that means.


Pink Cities

You say you sleep with movie stars
and fly with rocket boots.
Circling pink cities
you drink margaritas from a backpack
with a straw that’s worn as spectacles.
Living the dream, my friend.

Maybe that’s all you remember.
Or maybe it’s a cover story.
Listen, do you really know
what goes on in that head of yours?
Nights, you spend eight hours
unconscious in the theme park.
Mornings, you pick yourself up
at the chain-link gate
throat sore from screaming
pockets free of keys and change and
before you can make out their faces
all your companions flee into the street
on footfalls like fists to a pillow.

From the kitchen, the smell of coffee,
the low buzz of radio.
The sweet relief of a warm body
yours, someone else’s,
and one more morning.


Michelle will be featured in the Arts section of Brisbane News next week, so be sure to check out the issue online.


Filed under Pin Ups