Steady As She Goes For Sea Things

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3rd November 2009, 01:21pm - Views: 855

People Feature The Red Room Company 1 image

PO Box 1389

Darlinghurst NSW 1300

Telephone 02 9319 5090

Mobile 0425 312 334

ABN 35 103 464 446



November 2009



The oceans have been kind to a national literary project

that has ships carrying commissioned and contributed poetry along

both the east and west coasts of Australia.

A duffle bag full of verse is due to arrive in Brisbane tomorrow after a voyage that started in

Hobart in early October, while a second bulging bag that set sail from Fremantle is now safely in

port in Darwin. 

The two lots of “cargo” are on course for a cultural rendezvous on Thursday Island in the

coming weeks as part of Sea Things – a scheme that aims to build on Australia's maritime

poetry tradition in a contemporary context, imagining the nation’s sea history through new work

that can be shared nationally and internationally through print, audio, film and web forms.

Tomorrow, Queensland-born poet Luke Beesley will perform original verse commissioned for

the project in honour of the duffle bag leaving port for Cairns on the Alexander Spiritexpanded

by poems received from the public, local writers Bronwyn Hope, Getano Bann and Graham

Nunn and students of Kelvin Grove State College.

The Darwin duffle bag will take its leave across the Torres Straight on the weekend.

“The voyages have been running smoothly and the response from coastal communities has so

far been outstanding,” commented Johanna Featherstone, the Artistic Director of The Red

Room Company, the project organiser.

“It is difficult to gauge how a project like this is going to resonate with people generally, so to

see both bags getting fatter and fatter is wonderful…we’ll happily need a team of helpers to

bring them ashore on Thursday Island.

“The contents are being kept secret to all, so we don’t know what contributors have been

saying. But given the nature of the travels we are expecting the works to contain many voices,

themes and surprises.”

On Thursday Island on 15-16 November, all of the poems will be revealed and read as part of a

special event involving students from the three local schools, including Tagai State College.

People can submit poems for placing in the bags in several ways:


Turn up to the live events that occur at either the arrival or departure of the duffle bags,


Email them to


Post them, no later than Monday 9 November, to: The Red Room Company, PO Box

1389 Darlinghurst, NSW, 1300

People Feature The Red Room Company 2 image

PO Box 1389

Darlinghurst NSW 1300

Telephone 02 9319 5090

Mobile 0425 312 334

ABN 35 103 464 446


Post them on the POOL website: 

The complete set of works will be flown from Thursday

Island to Sydney for a finale public performance on 

Sydney Harbour on 26 November.

What:   Poetry readings to mark the departure of Alexander Spirit

to Cairns

When:  Wednesday, 4 November



Where: Caltex Products Wharf, via South Street (off Lytton Rd), Lytton

Media inquiries: Johanna Featherstone, Red Room Company, on

0425 312 334, or Graham Cassidy, Cato Counsel, on 0419 202 317 

  The Red Room Company creates, promotes and publishes a spectrum of poetry by Australian writers, in

unusual ways. The company is not-for-profit and is supported by The Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation,

The Australia Council for the Arts, Arts NSW, The Ian Potter Foundation and The Keir Foundation.



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