Scar to Scar
A6 32pp ISBN 978-0-9873057-6-3
(cover photograph: Chris Mansell)
$9.90 each including postage
Scar to Scar is an evocative collaborative work in which poet Michele Seminara responds to the work of Robbie Coburn, finding new texts within his poems. Initially begun as a means of extracting light from what were often troubling topics, the poems use the same language to create entirely different 'counter' pictures. The collaboration soon developed into a way of exploring the connection between the two poets, as well as their individual and shared connections to language and expression.
About Robbie Coburn
Robbie Coburn was born in June 1994 in Melbourne and grew up on his family's farm in the semi-rural locality of Woodstock, Victoria.
Since his first professional publication at the age of 17, his work has appeared in many Australian and overseas publications such as Poetry, Overland, Westerly, Cordite Poetry Review and Going Down Swinging. Some of his poems have been anthologised.
His poetry collections are Rain Season (Picaro) and The Other Flesh (Hunter).He has also published a handful of chapbooks and pamphlets.
His work is known for being deeply personal and sometimes confronting, and for its often harrowing depictions of farm life in country Victoria. Les Wicks said that “[his] ruthless eviscerated honesty and clarity scar the eye” and characterised Coburn as “the best portraitist of Australian rural life since Brendan Ryan”.
Robert Adamson noted that Coburn's poems “are created with a muscular craft that glows with alert intelligence” and that they “create an inner life that draws in the reader” which “shimmers with light as much as it burns with ferocity.”
His website is www.robbiecoburn.com.au See more about Robbie Coburn at The Poetry Foundation
Other collections by Robbie Coburn
The Other Flesh (Hunter Publishers, due 2017)
The Silences (Eaglemont Press, 2016)
Mad Songs (Blank Rune Press, 2015)
Before Bone and Viscera (Rochford St Press, 2014)
Rain Season (Picaro Press, 2013)
Human Batteries (Picaro Press, 2012)
About Michele Seminara
Michele Seminara is a poet, editor, critic and yoga teacher who lives in Sydney with her husband and three children.
Her writing has appeared in publications such a Tincture, Seizure, Mascara, Transnational Literature and Plumwood Mountain, and has been anthologised within Australia and overseas. Her first poetry collection, Engraft, was published by Island Press (2016). Michele is also the managing editor of online creative arts journal Verity La.
Michele's poetry explores the darker side of interpersonal relationships, particularly within the sphere of the domestic. Melinda Louise Smith has noted that her work displays “a fierce commitment to witness with clear eyes the horrors we commit upon ourselves and each other”, while American poet Charles Bane Jnr. has stated that “Seminara's deep gift lies in her fusion of the viscera of life with a transcendent poetic vision” and calls her “a major new voice in contemporary poetry”.
Michele Seminara's website is www.micheleseminara.wordpress.com
Other collections by Michele Seminara
Engraft (Island Press, 2016)
Reviews of Engraft are in Mascara Literary Review, Plumwood Mountain and The Compulsive Reader and Cordite.
Here is Robbie Coburn's initial poem, followed by Michele Seminara's response (crafted out of the words/forms of words of Robbie's. These are the first poems in the collection.
triggering the pulse, you observe yourself listening.
though silent now,words form on your lips. closer
to your own now you sweep all absence away
a deserted body
the empty bed shrinking into burning nights
the buildings stand as a formation of longing
the embrace frantic within you. unseen
you write across the darkness
ink a permanent beyond you.
now masked in flesh you hear the rain.
there is blood in these words.
an empty bed, the sweep
of frantic embrace.
Masked by rain you ink
your blood, your longing
an unseen formation.
This body with its shrinking
flesh, its lips triggering words
burns closer than the darkness