Tag Archives: Night Swim by Jonathan Hadwen

Brisbane New Voices – now available to order

Well, I have to say I am buzzing about the launch of Brisbane New Voices this Sunday at the first SpeedPoets event for 2010 in our new home at InSpire Gallery Bar (71 Vulture St West End). I have had the pleasure of hearing both of the featured poets – Jonathan Hadwen & Fiona Privitera – read from the collection at recent events, so it will be a great thing to get this mighty fine little book officially out into the world.

This is a striclty limited edition printing, so I am offering readers of Another Lost Shark the opportunity to secure a copy by emailing me at geenunn(at)yahoo.com.au with the subject line Brisbane New Voices. Please be sure to include your postal address and your preferred payment – paypal, direct debit or cheque/money order.

And as we are celebrating the launch of a new series and the emerging voices of this fine city, I am throwing in a copy of Going Down Swinging #29 with each order, all for the special price of $15 including postage.

I am hoping this series develops a life of its own and supports the careers of many emerging poets.

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SpeedPoets has a new home for 2010

SpeedPoets have packed up eight beautiful years of history in the New Farm/Fortitude Valley precinct and are heading on over to West End to make InSpire Gallery Bar their new home in 2010. InSpire is already the home of Poetry Smack which runs every second Tuesday from 7:30pm and was the venue for the last Small Change Press launch, so it is no stranger to the live poetry scene…

To kick off the 2010 year, SpeedPoets are hosting the official launch of the exciting Brisbane New Voices chapbook featuring Jonathan Hadwen (Night Swim) and Fiona Privitera (Peep Show). And as always there will be music from the SpeedPoets engine room of Sheish Money, giveaways/raffles and plenty of space for you to breathe life into your words in Brisbane’s hottest Open Mic section.

The first gig of the year will be held on Sunday March 7 with doors opening at 2pm – along with Open Mic sign up – and the live action starting at 2:30pm. So make sure you are there to bring in the new era and christen the new venue as the 2010 year takes off!

InSpire Gallery Bar is located at 71 Vulture St. West End… and we are looking forward to calling it home!

SpeedPoets, Sunday March 7, 2:00pm – 5:00pm @ InSpire Gallery Bar, 71 Vulture St. West End


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Night Swimming with Jonathan Hadwen: Riverbend Feature Poet #4

Launching a book is an adventure… and debut author Jonathan Hadwen is about to take the ride with his collection Night Swim which will be launched at the first Riverbend Books, Poetry on the Deck event on Tuesday Feb 23. I fired a few questions at him recently to get his thoughts on publication, readings and how he approaches a poem.



The Riverbend Books reading will be the launch of Night Swim, your micro-collection released as part of the Brisbane New Voices series. What does it mean to you to put your work out into the world for the first time in book format?

I definitely got a kick out of seeing the chapbook.  I’ve been leaving it out in obvious places around the house so visitors will stumble upon it.  

How do you approach a poem?
I wait for it to approach me.  I have never had any success trying for force myself to write poetry.  The only things I have found helpful are reading lots of poetry (something about getting your mind into a certain rhythm) and long rides on public transport (maybe there is something in the rhythm of a train clinking over the tracks too?).  Once I have that start there is always work to be done – typing up, editing, collating, sending stuff off and maybe practicing delivery if I plan to read it somewhere, but I have to wait for the first part of the process.

Who are the people who have influenced your work and what is it about them (and their work) that has had the most impact?
E. E. Cummings was one of the first poets I started reading of my own volition and he released me from the misconception that poetry was about using as many big words as possible.  I remember catching my breath when reading the poem where he compares loneliness and heartbreak to hearing “one bird sing terribly afar in the lost lands”.

I love Charles Bukowski because he told it how it was.  I like poetry that is unashamedly personal and dislike poetry where I feel like the writer is trying to hide behind a riddle.

One of my favourite poets is Bruce Dawe.  That is how I want my own poetry to be – uncomplicated and honest.

The local poetry scene has also had a huge effect on me over the last few years and I feel lucky to be a poet living in Brisbane right now.

What excites you most about presenting your work to a live audience?

It’s great to be able to read my work to people who haven’t heard it before – probably the best chance a poet has of winning some new fans.


Jonathan Hadwen is a Brisbane poet who has been published in Southerly, Overland and Page Seventeen as well as other publications in Australia and overseas.  He is inspired by public transport, office politics, the ocean, cute waitresses and the merciless summers of his hometown.  On the first Sunday of each month he can be found at the Speedpoets poetry event at the Alibi Room in New Farm, and his first micro-collection “Night Swim” is to be released in 2010 as part of the Brisbane New Voices series.

More of Jonathan’s work can be found at: http://www25.brinkster.com/jkhey/poetry/index.asp


Route 199

You can fall in love
on nights like this
delayed and distracted
on your way home from work
too long since you last ate

sitting in a daze
crammed on a bus 
next to a girl with Scandinavian skin
a girl so beautiful you might think
she floats across the top of life

There are nights when you expect strangers
to throw kisses not punches
those kisses buzzing in the air
in your ear
filling the space left by non-existent conversation

There are nights
saved for cities and crowds
and bus rides
in which you might fall in love
and then out of love again
before you’ve even reached
the next stop.


Poetry on the Riverbend Books deck

Queensland Poetry Festival, QLD Writers Centre & Riverbend Books are proud to present the first Poetry on the Deck event for 2010. Join us on the Riverbend deck as we showcase an exciting mix of local poets to kick start the year. Our first event will feature the seductive and award winning words of Bronwyn Lea (The Other Way Out, Giramondo Press) reading along side debut author, Jonathan Hadwen (Night Swim, Brisbane New Voices vol. 1), Pam Schindler and recent finalist in the QLD Poetry Slam, Betsy Turcot. And as the event falls on the 189th anniversary of John Keats’ death, there will also be a special reading of some of his best known works.

Date: Tuesday 23 February
Location: Riverbend Books, 193 Oxford St. Bulimba
Time: Doors open for the event at 6pm for a 6:30pm start
Tickets: $10 available through Riverbend Books and include sushi and complimentary wine. To purchase tickets, call Riverbend Books on (07) 3899 8555 or book online at http://www.riverbendbooks.com.au/Events/EventDetails.aspx?ID=2237

These events are always hugely popular, so book early to avoid disappointment!


Filed under events & opportunities, poetry & publishing