thou sand

Michael Farrell grew up in Bombala on the Monaro in S.E. N.S.W. (not to be confused with the Martian crater); it is now known as "Platypus country." His books include ode ode, a raiders guide, the graphic poetry book BREAK ME OUCH, Out of the Box: Contemporary Australian Gay and Lesbian Poets (co-edited with Jill Jones), and most recently thempark. Michael lives in Fitzroy in the inner north of Melbourne.


thou sand
By Michael Farrell • December 2011 • $3
Design by Eric Butler

“Perhaps more than any other recent Australian poet, Michael Farrell has tested, often tauntingly, the loving struggle of meaning and chance, played out in much contemporary Australian poetry,” writes Michael Brennan. But in _thou sand_, Farrell refuses to leave chance to chance, mining the meanings located in syllables, enjambed words. His method is to increase meaning through the reduction of words to their spare parts. Hence, lines like “tion from the beau:” spring into phrases, “no sa: / tis: / fac:/ tion from the beau: / ti: / ful” where syntax becomes suspenseful, the sentence an unfolding into flow from utter syn: co: pa: tion!

from “like kaf-“:

ka no-
one can stand the sounds stan-
ding up head out the win-
dow get-
ting a-
long on feet most-
ly fa-
shion in parts like pa-
ris ap-
ly some-
times you on-
ly feel it in the su-
burbs in the sun-


Watch a video of Michael Farrell reading in the Asialink Winter Writing Series.

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