We’re locked down, little by little losing touch with familiar, comforting elements of the greater world.
Social distancing is one thing, but we can still join, shoulder to shoulder, in the life of the mind.
Here at Meanjin we’d like to make a small contribution, dipping into our 80-year archive to offer a daily piece of reading … some words to fill the growing quiet moments of our days.
It’s an odd reflection, but when Meanjin as established, back in December 1940, the intention of its founding editor Clem Christesen was to offer a literary buffer to hard times. Back then it was the Second World War, now it’s the omnipresent threat of Covid 19 and the isolation it has brought, the sudden distance from our normal lives.
In his first Meanjin editorial, 80 years ago, Clem put it like this: ‘In an age governed by the stomach and pocket view of life, and at a time of war and transition we will strive to talk poetry.’
It almost sounds like a plan.
So, sign up to this new Meanjin email if you like, and every morning at about 7am we’ll send you a link to new piece of reading. It might be old, it might be new, an Australian classic, or a new emerging voice.
Essay, fiction, memoir or poetry … we’ve got an 80-year supply, and we’ll keep the words coming … in this, our moment of ‘war and transition’.
Jonathan Green and Tess Smurthwaite
Your Meanjin team.