Monday, September 26, 2022

Two Poets Paint: John Kinsella & Glen Phillips art exhibition at Sandalwood Yards Gallery, York

 By Tracy

Saturday 24th September saw the opening by Will Yeoman of an exhibition that will run for 2 weeks (till 8th October) containing works by John Kinsella & Glen Phillips, as part of the York Festival. This exhibition is located on Ballardong Noongar Boodja.

Glen's works feature wheatbelt landscapes; John's are interpretations of scenes from Dante's Divine Comedy.

Entry to the exhibition is free, and the artists' works are for sale.

Sat 24 Sep – Sat 8 Oct (Wed – Sun, 10am-4pm)

Sandalwood Yards Gallery, 179 Avon Terrace, York

You can watch & hear John reading a poem from his Divine Comedy: Journeys Through a Regional Geography at the launch here

Some photos from the gallery:

Glen Phillips & Rita Tognini in front of some of Glen's works

John Kinsella & Tracy Ryan with some of John's works

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Blank Signs

Russian anti-war protesters were arrested for displaying blank signs. A British lawyer displayed a blank sign yesterday and a police officer threatened arrest should he write 'not my King' on it. Fascism has various faces, but always the same rule book. Monarchism is a particularly honed form and tool of fascism. Many media outlets in Australia are directing and controlling what is essential a colonial reassertion via the death of one monarch and the raising of the next. Those who do not communally participate are judged, and those who fail to participate in the public eulogies are frequently excoriated. The state is the state is the state, and an absent 'head of state' who functions through a proxy suits a colonial realm that purports not to be colonial, but is as much now as it ever was. It just has more effective propaganda and often unwitting propagandists to call on.

A Most Gracious Speech to Demi-text in the Fallout of Lèse-majesté

Blank signs are deadly signs

and any failure to switch the porch light on

is marked down as a location

of those refusing to mourn

the postage stamp of empire.


And wide-angle lens crowds

assisting police

to impose the new order

which is the old order,

as we know, as the apophthegm

goes and goes in whoever’s



But this is protocol.

The face on currency

will face the other way.

It’s like a nuclear submarine deal.


In the colonies the delusion

is an amusement park ride.

Coconut shies at the fair,

a monopoly on copra.

Cheap labour.


Blank signs are deadly signs

as phantom limbs threaten arrest

before a protest, before the letters

take shape. Monarchies love mobs

that dance in their favour,

especially when the extras

are voluntary. Those

they touched and put to heal.


A failure to put the porch light on

leaves a myth of origin in the dark.

All those reigning memories.

All those entertaining scandals.

All those sporting occasions.

All those Royal Command Performances.

All those Victoria Crosses.

All those struggles for Independence.

The science of cortèges.


Commander-in-chief. Regalia.

All those deaths.  All those.


And porch lights on down in Australia

with eyes out for dissenters:

‘those grubs’,  those anarchists.

A Funeral for the earth

whose rain we celebrate.


Mourning glory in the republic

of conscience. I was bullied

under the monarch’s portrait.


Blank signs are deadly signs

and any failure to switch the porch light on

is marked down as a location

of those refusing to mourn

the postage stamp of empire.




            John Kinsella