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Kate Fagan's The Long Moment is a gorgeous and brilliant book, a work of complex sensuousness and deep intelligence. Fagan brings to her work the microcosmically precise insights of a geologist or biologist, but the writings are informed also by a strong sense of social history. Each poem, even each page, is a specific site for study, for sentience, and for politics. Observations from everyday life move into sharp focus alongside formal meditations on the act of perception itself. Fagan's compressed lyricism takes stock of the material world, exploring relations between living bodies and things while allowing each to remain distinct and mobile. Poems are lineated to suit the specific pressures and drifts of Fagan's thinking, with issues of sonic and technical control remaining central throughout. The book's 'Anti-landscape' sequence gathers several key preoccupations of late twentieth-century Australian poetry and inverts them to offer a new, politically astute mode of geographical address. Overheard fragments from contemporary media sit alongside intimate findings in 'The waste of tongues,' creating a narrative that is both calmly persuasive and critically telling. The long moment of this book's details is beautiful; in The Long Moment the site at which they collect has become astoundingly meaningful.
Kate Fagan was born in 1973 and lives in Sydney. Additional publications include the chapbooks return to a new physics (Sydney: Vagabond) and Thought's Kilometre (London: Tolling Elves). Her poetry appears in Calyx: 30 Contemporary Australian Poets. Kate is the editor of HOW2, a US-based journal of innovative contemporary and modernist writing by women, and co-editor with Peter Minter of material poetics review. Also a musician, she has performed extensively across Australia and in the UK.