Among the Chaos

This is my writing place, the place I sit to feel like I’ve never written anything in my life. I put a mandala from a friend’s mother, Bernadette, Laila’s mother, there a few months ago. I am pretty sure it works, although I don’t know precisely what it does. All of those shelves are triple or quadruple booked, and I will find you anything in there in less than a minute. Don’t ask George about this. In the bottom shelf there’s a plastic Coles bag with two copies of my book, The Open. On the desk is a ceramic hand. When my friend, Ruth, came into this room, many years ago now, the first thing she said was, cool hand. There’s a Conrad book I haven’t read next to where my laptop usually sits. There are a few Adorno books on the floor, at the foot of the desk – these I’ve read lots of times. The ones I read are on the floor, not the desk. Next to Rosa’s bee.

Lucy Van is a Lockie Fellow at the University of Melbourne, where she also teaches literary studies. Lucy’s work has appeared in places including History of Photography, Journal of Australian Studies, Griffith Review, Southerly, Liminal Review of Books, Cordite Poetry Review, and Best of Australian Poems. Her first poetry collection, The Open (Cordite 2021), was longlisted for the Stella prize.