Felicity Plunkett on ‘Truth in the Cage’ by Mohammad Ali Maleki

As part of her review of No Friend But the Mountains: Writing from Manus Prison by Behrouz Boochani in Australian Book Review, Felicity Plunkett says of Truth in the Cage:

Maleki tends a garden on Manus Island, yet his poems evoke images of the natural world thwarted or gone awry – ‘the autumn leaf grows green’, ‘the moon implodes’, ‘the butterfly flies back to its cocoon’. In an allegory of refoulement, everything in ‘Silence Land’ is turned back: the tree to its seed, the sea to its source, the river to its spring. In the more surreal ‘Myself’, groans swell the sky, the sea becomes stormy and fish ‘[scatter] in fear’.

The book’s first poem, ‘Dream of Death’, begins by addressing readers as ‘my dears’, and implores: ‘please, I ask you, listen’. Both Boochani and Maleki evoke the experience of there being absolutely nothing to do and the impact this has on the mind. Each writer has endured this year after year.

Although Maleki writes of blankness and weariness, in ‘Where is My Name?’, he affirms ‘I won’t neglect to report on these days’. From the ‘cursed city’ of Manus, he writes tender works of witness and consolation commemorating others people’s deaths – Hamed Shamshiripour, who died by hanging, and Aylan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian asylum seeker whose body was washed up on a Turkish beach. Yet for all their gentleness, these are steely poems, refusing silence and namelessness

The complete review of No Friend But the Mountains: Writing from Manus Prison can be read athttps://www.australianbookreview.com.au/abr-online-exclusives/5072-felicity-plunkett-reviews-no-friend-but-the-mountains-writing-from-manus-prison-by-behrouz-boochani, and, in the context of contemporary Australian culture and politics, this is an important review about a very important book. It is pleasing to see Maleki’s work linked with Boochani’s.

Truth in the Cage is available from https://rochfordstreetpress.com/rochford-street-press-titles/
No Friend but the Mountain, by Behrouz Boochani, is published by Picador and is available from https://www.panmacmillan.com.au/9781760555382/ 

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Rochford Street Press announces the publication of ‘Truth in the Cage’ by Mohammad Ali Maleki

Rochdford Street Press and Verity La are proud to announce the publication of Mohammad Ali Maleki’s long awaited chapbook, Truth in the Cage. Written from within Manus Island detention centre, where Mohammad has been incarcerated for the last five years, Truth in the Cage is a powerful work of personal and political poetry.

Mohammad Ali Maleki is an Iranian poet and avid gardener who has been living in detention on Manus Island for five years. His poetry, written in Farsi, is translated into English by fellow detainee Mansour Shoushtari. Mohammad uses his mobile phone to send his poems to friends in Australia who help to edit, share and publish them. Mohammad’s poem ‘The Strong Sunflower’ was the impetus for, and first work published on, Verity La’s Discoursing Diaspora project. Since then, his writing has been published by online literary journal Bluepepper and by the Blue Mountains Refugee Support Group. He has been a featured poet on Rochford Street Review and his poems and letters have been included in the Dear Prime Minister Project and at the Denmark Festival of Voice. His poem ‘Tears of Stone’ was shortlisted for the Red Room Company’s 2016 New Shoots Poetry Prize and received Special Commendation for extraordinary work in extreme circumstances. His poem ‘Silence Land’ was performed at the 2017 Queensland Poetry Festival as part of the Writing Through Fences performance, Through the Moon. An essay about his writing is forthcoming in the Extreme Texts Issue of Jacket2 magazine. Despite living in extreme conditions, Mohammad continues to create poetry saying, ‘You can find my whole life in my poems, like a letter to God.’

“Mohammad Ali Maleki, along with translator Mansour Shoshtari, present an intimate and lyrical window into their world of exile as political prisoners of Australia. The work is woven with an embodied sense of their poetic and literary heritages, resulting in deeply engaging, contemplative and passionate poems.  Maleki’s direct use of language often opens out into a magical horror – no less real – implicating the reader as much as the poet in a deconstruction and reconstruction of identity. ‘What if the woollen jacket I am wearing unravels / and begins to fall apart?’. Truth in the Cage delivers truths, uncomfortable and often torturous, through a painterly language, providing much-needed clarity in these times of obfuscation and systematic silencing”

 – Janet Galbraith, Writing Through Fences

There will be a launch for Truth in the Cage on July 17 at The Sydney Poetry Lounge. The book will be available for purchase on the night. All profits go directly to Mohammad.

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Within Australia $10 plus $1 postage
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Outside Australia
$16 including postage

Truth in the Cage can also be purchased from the Verity La Store

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Trimming Mohammad Ali Maleki’s ‘Truth in Cage’

Over the long weekend in NSW we have been putting the finishing touches on the Mohammad Ali Maleki’s new chapbook Truth in the Cage. Being hand made the final step is trimming each book.

Mohammad Ali Maleki’ is an Iranian poet and avid gardener who has been living in detention on Manus Island for four years. His poetry, written in Farsi, is translated into English by fellow detainee Mansour Shoushtari. Mohammad uses his mobile phone to send his poems to friends in Australia who help to edit, share and publish them. Mohammad’s poem ‘The Strong Sunflower’ was the impetus for, and first work published on, Verity La’s Discoursing Diaspora project. Since then, his writing has been published by online literary journal Bluepepper and by the Blue Mountains Refugee Support Group. He has been a featured poet on Rochford Street Review and his poems and letters have been included in the Dear Prime Minister Project and at the Denmark Festival of Voice. His poem ‘Tears of Stone’ was shortlisted for the Red Room Company’s 2016 New Shoots Poetry Prize and received Special Commendation for extraordinary work in extreme circumstances. His poem ‘Silence Land’ was performed at the 2017 Queensland Poetry Festival as part of the Writing Through Fences performance, Through the Moon. Despite living in extreme conditions, Mohammad continues to create poetry, saying ‘You can find my whole life in my poems, like a letter to God’.

Truth in the Cage will be available shortly through Rochford Street Press and Verity La and launch details will be finalised shortly. If you want to be informed when Truth in the Cage is available and to be informed of launch details please email rochfordstreetpress@gmail.com.

 

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Cactus by Stevi-Lee Alver to be Launched by Dr Moya Costello

Cactus, the first chap book by Stevi-Lee Alver, will be launched by Dr Moya Costello at the Bangalow Heritage Museum & Tea Rooms, Bangalow NSW, on 30th April 2016 at 3pm.

RSVP via the Facebook event https://www.facebook.com/events/1122362787797663/

If you can’t make the launch you can order copies here  https://rochfordstreetpress.wordpress.com/rochford-street-press-titles/

cactus book launch

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Rochford Street Press announces the publication of ‘Cactus’ by Stevi-Lee Alver

Cactus by Stevi-Lee Alver ISBN: 978-0-949327-03-1. $7.50 (plus $1 postage).  Cover design by Narelle Adair. Release date  1 April 2016

CactusRochford Street Press is proud to announce the publication of Cactus by emerging writer Stevi-Lee Alver. Based in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, Stevi-Lee has had her fiction, poetry, and reviews published across Australia and the United States. In 2014, while studying at the University of Massachusetts, she received the Class of 1940 Creative Writing Award for poetry. She was one of the winners of the 2014 Questions Writing Prize for her short-story ‘Phoenix’. She received the 2015 Southern Cross University award for Excellence in The Arts and has published a number of reviews and articles in Rochford Street Review. Stevi-Lee currently works at the North Coast Cancer Institute and studies at Southern Cross University. Cactus is her first book.

Cactus Beach: famous for its left and right hand breaks. Two women soak up sea, desert, sun and sensuality in this spare meditation on love.
–Susan Hawthorne

Cactus is a sensate invocation for entanglement in our biosphere-in-delicate-balance. Via her own fine judgement, emerging writer Stevi-Lee Alver potentiates the prose poem, making a ‘surfie chick’ narrative into a deeply affecting bel canto.
– Moya Costello

Cactus will be launched by Moya Costello at the Bangalow Heritage Museum & Tea Rooms, Ashton Street Bangalow on Saturday 30th April 2016 at 3pm.  (https://www.facebook.com/events/1122362787797663/)

You can order Cactus now (copies will be shipped on 1 April)

cart$7.50 plus $1.00 Postage
(within Australia)

Or you can order directly from the author by contacting Stevi-Lee on  stevileealver@icloud.com

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About Rochford Street Press

Rochford Street Press logo 1985Rochford Street Press was founded by Mark Roberts to publish P76 Magazine. The press was named after the street in Erskineville NSW where Mark was living at the time with a gestetner machine. Over the years RSP has remained a small and fiercely  independent press publishing a series of chapbooks, poetry books, anthologies and journals. In December 2011 Rochford Street Press launched Rochford Street Review, arguably the most important contemporary independent literary and cultural journal in Australia. Forthcoming chapbooks from RSP include works by Sarah St Vincent Welch (Open) and Mark Roberts (Six Months).

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El Asombrado by Les Wicks – A new e-book from Rochford Street Press.

cover 2Rochford Street Press is excited to announce the publication of Les Wicks’ 12th title.  El Asombrado is available as a free e-book from Rochford Street Press. Just visit http://elasombrado.com/.

The title loosely translates to “He Who Watches and is Amazed”- it is a selection of work from over the past 15 years presented in both Spanish & English. The translator, Colombian G. Leogena is a master of the art.

Two fabulous graphics front and back from Australian-born, long-time Mexico resident, artist Elizabeth Skelsey.

PDF copies can also be obtained for just $1 from http://elasombrado.com/rochford-street-press/purchase-el-asombrado/ or by clicking here

btn_buynowCC_LGOnce purchased the PDF will be emailed to you within 24 hours – please ensure you enter the correct email address for delivery.

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Dipti Saravanamuttu – ‘Statistic for the New World’ – Special Offer

Dipti Saravanamuttu – Statistic for the New World.

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Very limited stock available of Dipti Saravanamuttu’s first poetry collection published in 1988.

Dipti Saravanmuttu sets a high Standard with her first collection of poems. The poems, though at times difficult, are inventive and original and the work is always entertaining. Throughout one is aware of an intelligence working with the precocious limits of language and association…” Judith Beveridge

$20 Australia / $27.50 International

cart
Within Australia $20

cartInternational Aust$27.50

All funds raised will go towards supporting Rochford Street Review and the ongoing chapbook publishing program at Rochford Street Press

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