(iv) by Dan Disney

As an extension of Arc’s Canada-Australia joint issue with Australia’s Cordite magazine, over the next several weeks, Arc will be publishing online selected pieces from Australian poets — this is in addition to the Australian poetry published in print in Arc 77. For the Arc-Cordite joint issue, each magazine handed the editorial responsibilities over to the other: so that Cordite filled Arc #77 (and these these webpages) with nothing but Australian poetry, prose and artwork; Arc did the same for Cordite (Arc’s part of this partnership will be published online at Cordite in December 2014). Our intent in this partnership is to showcase and cross-pollinate poetics between Australia and Canada and to share with a broader audience poetry that may be little known outside of home borders.



drifting dimensions, the shriek of being excluded from things
     what is it under the surface of skin
          that hungers for remarks passing amid dead flowers, transmitting

the ghosts of belief, vertiginous with angry desire to see inside the enormous
     visible spaces of representation framing light
          while dimensions drift, and the shriek of being excluded from things

     trespasses like fisticuffs between grace and thieves in brass knuckles
     those madmen inside the iconic action of themselves
          hungering for remarks passing under black windowpanes, where myths

swing, legs kicking, universal socialites crossing courts in real-time
     to kiss the veiled ‘maybe’ of not-needing, they too
          drift dimensions but quietly, breathlessly included in things

psychic fields spinning reenactments: underneath knowing, there’s a different presence
     bells ringing in a sequence of heard/un/heard/un•☆
          we hunger for remarks passed from silence into sleeping

multitudes moving to a purgatorial rhythm, where the syntax of cold surfaces
     speaks in glanced incredulity, and we are
          drifting dimensions – still! – the shriek of being excluded from things
          passing between dead flowers

Paris Review, Spring 2003, #165 (Jorie Graham)


Dan Disney teaches in the Literature program at Sogang University (Seoul). This year, his critical writing appears in Orbis Litterarum and Axon; co-translations appear in World Literature Today; book reviews appear in Antipodes and Verse; poems appear in The Warwick Review and Postcolonial Text. He is completing a book of villanelles.

Skip to content