Phillip Hall writes from the edge: the edge of language; the edge of mental illness; and, from the perspective of a non-Indigenous poet and teacher standing at the edge of Indigenous culture and community carrying generosity and love alongside the ongoing trauma of dispossession. This is a volume intensely interested in language and the self-care required in precarious lives.
Praise for Fume
Phillip Hall’s Fume is a hymn and a love song for Borroloola on the Gulf of Carpentaria, and for the Yanyuwa, Mara, Gudanji & Garrawa peoples. One poem at time, Hall undertakes the crucial work of decolonising his own gaze as he walks through ‘Indigenous space’, led by and learning from its custodians. These intricately worked and deeply felt poems come from a place of humility, gratitude, respect and love, as well as sorrow for what has been lost and for the harrowing realities that remain. This is not a ‘singing of’, much less ‘singing at’, but a ‘singing with’ his Borroloola family, with their full permission and support.MELINDA SMITH
Phillip Hall is family to Blackfullas ... a champion who writes like truth ... he sees Country like me, like a lot of Blackfullas - seeing the minute, and seeing the inferences.PAUL COLLIS, WINNER OF THE 2016 DAVID UNAIPON AWARD
Phillip Hall, you loved our kids and worked very hard, always smiling and planning a camp. You respected Culture and listened. So we care for you very much. You are our friend and poetry mentor - thank you.JEANETTE YAWANJIBIRNA CHARLIE, YANYUWA LANGUAGE TEACHER, BORROLOOLA
This collection is consciously eco-poetic in its interrogation of the human and non-human worlds, with a clear eye for post-colonialism in all its manifestations. The poems are less confessional than they are protest poetry: personal, political, and powerful. These are poems that inform, provoke and inspire, fulfilling, in addition, Hall’s own demand that his writing have a clear narrative and that the poems themselves really ‘work’.ANGELA GARDNER, FOAM:E
Continuance of cultural protocols, investment, respect and reciprocity are the bedrock of Aboriginal societies. The amount of protocol, investment and reciprocity culminating in this work is substantial and essential. Very few non-Aboriginal people could produce a work such as this.JEANINE LEANE, VERITY LA