Memoir

 

Something Breathable

Something Breathable

Tiia Kelly
Inspiration I: Diaphragm flattens When I reflect on my childhood as a dancer, I think about holding my breath. I’d finish a routine with my palms outstretched to an imagined audience and look down to see my forearms, red with ...
Gardening at the End of the World

Gardening at the End of the World

Hannah Ky McCann, Hannah Ky McCann
I pulled up the tomato plants before they had finished fruiting. The sickly haze of the megafire had lifted only days earlier and now, able to spend time removing weeds and rot for the first time in weeks, I felt ...
Life of a Folk Devil

Life of a Folk Devil

Michael Mohammed Ahmad
‘There’s just one kind of folks. Folks.’ —Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird 1986 The midwives are horrified when they see the size of my head on my way out of the birth canal. I am born with a bright ...
On Lived Experience

On Lived Experience

Danijel Malbasa
In 2008 I was invited to travel to the United Nations in New York as part of a delegation of law students from South Australia. I remember getting a phone call from the organiser of the UN trip, and after he ...
Beekeeping as an Act of Resistance

Beekeeping as an Act of Resistance

Bethany Patch
Resisting the commodification of our lives can take many forms, and one that feels right to me is beekeeping. I first became interested in beekeeping when a friend I was living with had a hive that he would gently tend ...
Pink Post-its and Blue Candles

Pink Post-its and Blue Candles

Lyn Chatham
We were just starting on our prawn crackers. There was John, a student friend, Ian, now my husband and then boyfriend, and me. ‘That film made me feel so cold,’ Ian said. ‘It’s meant to,’ I replied, with a laugh ...
Body as a Continuum

Body as a Continuum

Leone Gabrielle
How do we relate to the body? Recover a sense of dignity and ownership of our body? Acknowledgement: Tony Birch’s question from the Red Room Emerging Writers’ Festival workshop recently made my insides cringe. A week later, this idea emerged ...
When Less is Whole

When Less is Whole

Na'ama Carlin
It was around 4 pm on Tuesday 12 July 2022. I’d been standing by the window for a while now, looking at the dusk slowly stretch itself on the city ahead, gathering courage to look down. Minutes passed, but my gaze remained ...
Diminutions

Diminutions

Diana Blackwood
In a small coastal town where I know almost no-one, in a hipsterish café that is becoming all too familiar, I am eavesdropping on two women at a neighbouring outdoor table. Their conversation has drifted from kayaking to the pangs ...
The Stacked Court

The Stacked Court

Mark E. Dean, Mark E. Dean
In June 2022, after almost 12 years as a judge of the County Court of Victoria, I retired from that position. COVID hastened my departure as the administration of justice became mired in a blur of protocols, RAT tests, WebEx ...
Thought Is Free

Thought Is Free

Ouyang Yu
Out on my daily walk, I recently had a thought visiting me that human beings are ants who have to keep moving around and doing things or else they get rusty and die, which reminds me of a poem I ...
A Very Wise Disco Ball

A Very Wise Disco Ball

Kate Joy
When mum called to tell me, I was on a bus. I asked if she was okay. ‘No,’ she said. As the night scene of Sydney’s Inner West blurred past I held on to the pole until I reached my ...
Twitching

Twitching

James Valentine
'Brush turkeys have suddenly turned carnivorous and have been seen feeding on dead bandicoots by the side of a road. It literally grabs a chunk of blood-red steak and wolfs it down,’ said behavioural ecologist Professor Daryl Jones. ‘One of ...
White Knuckles

White Knuckles

Daniel Reeders
A few years ago I was diagnosed with a serious intermittent mental illness, and I made a decision not to rush to publicise it. I used that experience to write a journal article, about the queer politics of disclosure of disability, ...
Whale Song

Whale Song

Drew Rooke
The cold shock is only slightly allayed by the wetsuit clinging to my body as I jump off the metal steps into the frigid ocean, but the pleasure of it trumps the pain. I take a few jagged breaths through ...