Case Notes

Case Notes

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David Stavanger


Winner of the 2021 Victorian Premier's Literary Award for Poetry


Your name is not yours / once it’s in their mouth   


The highly anticipated follow up to the award-winning collection The Special, this electric new body of work by David Stavanger is a mix tape of free verse, lyric poetry, found text, spoken word and flash fiction documenting the lived/living mental health experience and the well beyond.

Praise for Case Notes

'Case Notes is a visceral and profound meditation on masculinity, mental illness, fatherhood, family and suburban life. This deeply vulnerable collection expertly balances humour and wit alongside moments of grief, loneliness, anxiety and sadness. Stavanger's knowingly-disordered list poems, associative lyrics, inter-species dialogues, and prose poems slowly accumulate to weave a meticulously compiled poet-as-protagonist narrative that speaks to the personal, social and structural intimacies and embodiments of mental health experience.' The judges of the 2021 Victorian Premier's Literary Awards


'If you haven’t laughed or cried or seen rain in a while, Stavanger's collection is the breaking of the dry spell – the sore, urgent state of bursting forth, face lifted to the beauty and the horror of the world. The human and other animal bodies on these pages are expressed as grimly humorous, heartbreaking, stunningly experiential narratives. This is poetry at its very best.' Laura Jean McKay

'The poems in Case Notes are intimate and playful, elegiac and bursting with love. They walk us home with our dogs in every kind of weather, name all our missing things and claim them back. The world felt familiar and unknown to me after reading these poems.' Tishani Doshi

'This book is beautiful and sardonic and tender. Stavanger’s poetry traces the fractures of sanity and feeling, and makes meaning and hope in the hollows left by lost memories and lost people.' Jonathan Dunk