From this living tinder
I have made
a thin blue flame.
It will not stay
unless I cup
my palm around it.
Like piano music heard through a high window, the language is haunting but entirely of this world. The poems are awake to the dark constellations of art and history, to what momentarily is, and to what flows endlessly on.
‘In the last few years Australian poetry has seen a number of exciting debut collections and Sarah Holland-Batt’s Aria is another that can be included in that happy genre. In fact, it is a knockout.’ Australian Poetry Review
‘A serious talent … Holland-Batt’s ear is excellent: the line-breaks are unfailingly musical, the imagery precise and evocative. There is a wonderful quietness to the best poems. Holland-Batt has a confidence that doesn’t need to attempt shock or experiment to declare the poems’ intelligence.’ Southerly
‘Holland-Batt reveals a mature mind that makes her one of the most compelling poets to emerge in recent years… Aria displays a remarkable precision and economy of language, and a haunting acoustic, a captivating music that holds up the visual image. Reading a Holland-Batt poem, one is compelled to listen to the resonance, the silence, the meaning that echoes at the end of the last line.’ New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards – Kenneth Slessor Prize citation