Domestic Interior (Fiona Wright, Giramondo)
Fiona Wright’s second book Small Acts of Disappearance won the Kibble Literary Award for Australian women writers, and her debut Knuckled won the Mary Gilmore Award for poetry. In this new book of poems, Domestic Interior, Wright returns to themes she explored in those previous works: domesticity, the body, relationships, travel and suburbia. The collection is a meditation on modern life that spans Perth to Berlin, but focuses on Western Sydney. There are poems named for everyday objects (‘Catfood’, ‘Sweet Potato’ and ‘Phone Charger’) and those for big emotions (‘Love Poem: Miranda Fair’, ‘Charm for Unexpected Kindness’ and ‘Love Poem: Skull’). Wright brings these concerns together to explore how the mundane and profound are closely related, observing small, resonant gestures and their wider implications. Her writing is evocative, and while her gaze is focused inward, it remains attentive to the world at large. Domestic Interior will appeal to readers who appreciate beautiful language; those interested in love poems; those concerned with place, particularly Sydney; and those who want to explore the role of body, illness and feeling in contemporary life. It is her most accomplished writing yet.
Robert Wood is a writer, editor and the 2017 recipient of the Sydney Review of Books Copyright Agency Emerging Critic fellowship