Jennifer Maiden


Griffin Poetry Prize 2013
International Shortlist

Book: Liquid Nitrogen

Poet: Jennifer Maiden

Publisher: Giramondo Publishing

Click here to read and listen to an excerpt.

Leslie Greentree reads Emerald-cut by Jennifer Maiden


Alexandrian turquoise. The Nepean
tends to that hue after sunset: sky
blue if the sky were the true
colour of an Egyptian goddess,
semi-precious. In astronomy, the new
galaxy this week is tiny, the
shape of a lozenge, they say
‘like an emerald-cut diamond’, but
emerald-cut looks innocent, clear
through in the centre with no bright
light-shaking facets. The river
looks innocent like that: a deadly
reassurance in its mirror. Another
person drowned in it this week:
Yarramundi. Yes, dear, you must be one
of the world’s most lethal rivers. In
astronomy, when our galaxy
crashes into Andromeda, billions
of light years in the future, we
will look like an emerald-cut, probably,
they say.          Warragamba
Dam water floods weeds to Hawkesbury
so the emerald-cut shines smooth and fine
and chill as liquid nitrogen again, here
from the dead dam depths and under
it the goddess turquoise, like
          semi-precious sky,
like any shattered sun to shine
like water-diamonds, like
all revenants is private but returns
a public habit lying it is mine.

From Liquid Nitrogen by Jennifer Maiden
© Jennifer Maiden 2012

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