Magazines #1

Cordite 35: Oz-Ko

cordite 35: oz-ko
cordite magazine

One effect of the virtual departure of Jacket from Australia is the bringing forward of other internet journals such as cordite. cordite has been an innovative presence for years, but I think really took off with its collaborative issues, involving reworkings of each issue, beginning with 30: Custom/Made. They are not the only magazine to invite remixes but they are possibly the only one to invite contributors to post their own poems, and to use comment streams to create collaborative works. This is largely thanks to the genius of managing editor David Prater, currently resident in Sweden.

As is the current ambitious issue 35: Oz-Ko. Involving feature articles, interviews and translations of Australian poetry in Hangul, and (soon) Korean poetry into English. It's huge: and has involved support from government funding body Asialink, which sponsors cultural exchange between Australian and Asia. Australian poets visited Korea as part of the project and Korean poets will be in Melbourne next month.

One poem I liked particularly is Luke Beesley's 'This Is A Poem Without Mothers' in 35.1: Hoju-Hanguk. It begins:

The alarm in the morning is made of rubber

it invents the day around itself. Leonard Cohen


Sound effects continue: 'It drips five/ six. Again, I taste rust wake nicotine' and 'Rare fish skit, arc.' The only line that seems to lack sounding is the title - which is also the final line. It has nothing to sound with except itself. The final line refers back to the title, wrapping the poem in a rubber. The poem is itself; it needs no progeny.