Wagait Artists Group

In September, the Wagait Artists Group staged their first exhibition/festival featuring the work of Belyuen and Wagait Beach artists. This fine region I live in boasts a combined population of about 500 people, so staging an art exhibition was an achievement. Mind you, I’ve often called this place the Left Bank of Darwin as more and more artists have moved over, fleeing the unaffordable housing situation in town.

During the weekend, I facilitated a poetry workshop that featured free and structured writing exercises. One of the tasks was to respond to the artworks on display. I thought it would be nice to present here some of the poems and the artworks that inspired them. Thanks very much to the 12 participating writers and artists, to the WAGS, Wagait Beach Supermarket and Sue Chaplin for the photographs of the works.


Trust by Ally Richmond

Sandra Thibodeaux responds to Ally Richmond’s Trust



Ships draw water,
hold breath.


Hulls in double time –
spellbound by choice.


Rusty vessels hold hands,
burst their shadows.


Lit like a stage, containers tip
their cast of live people.


History suspended;
the sea turns green.


Poem © Sandra Thibodeaux
Image © Ally Richmond (photography Sue Chaplin)



Undercurrent by Nena Zanos

Undercurrent by Nena Zanos

Meredith Davies responds to Nena Zanos’s Undercurrent


Bags resemble teeth
animated creatures
a suspended army of floating decay.

severed head lies on a bed of bottles
plastic ziplock snapjaw
the dread that lurks beneath.


Poem © Meredith Davies
Image © Nena Zanos (photography Sue Chaplin)


Space Mouse by Mili Eaton

Space Mouse by Mili Eaton

Bry McVicar responds to Mili Eaton’s Space Mouse

Space Mouse
BAM! Space mouse is here.
Arrrrrrrrrrrms up!
Ready for ACTION.

Fizzy crazy space mouse
Hypercolour space house.

ZAP! BAM! Mum – look!
Space mouse is gonna shoot the moon.

Laser POWER!

Turbo charged.


Poem © Bry McVicar
Image © Mili Eaton (photography Sue Chaplin)


Carrot, Corn, Beer by Dave Collins

Carrot, Corn, Beer by Dave Collins

Tara McDonald responds to Dave Collins’s Carrot, Corn, Beer

Carrot, Corn, Beer

Sinking / sucking / slurping
grotesque delicious fresh fruit
metallic tangy zinging
inhale exhale
congestion / constipation
sharp stabbing pain
faint, drowsy mucous
tangled terrified
childhood onion peels
layer upon layer danger – inhale
swamp sludge, citrus candy.


Poem © Tara McDonald
Image © Dave Collins (photography Sue Chaplin)



Barramundi by Anthony Moreen

Barramundi by Anthony Moreen

Dylan Prins responds to Anthony Moreen’s Barramundi


Prize fish displayed
A treasured catch with pride
Mine was this big
And it had a jellyfish inside

She was a strong swimmer and
I speared her in my undies
We’ll surely enjoy for dinner
This blessed Barramundi.


Poem © Dylan Prins
Image © Anthony Moreen (photography Sue Chaplin)


The Very Hungry Bear by Nick Bland

The Very Hungry Bear by Nick Bland

Jeremy Garnett responds to Nick Bland’s The Very Hungry Bear

The Very Hungry Bear

Bruce the bear had had much luck
in gathering up his feast,
hiding where the fish were flung
by his furry fisher foe.

When confronted by said bear,
the evidence in his paws,
speechless he, with mouth much filled,
could only clutch and stare.

This, when painted by speedy hand,
was perfectly placid in kind
but failed to show the brawl that ensued,
bear fur and fish blood combined.


Poem © Jeremy Garnett
Image © Nick Bland (photography Sue Chaplin)



About sandrathibodeaux

Poet and Playwright
This entry was posted in Miscellaneous Poetry, Other Poets, Political Poetry and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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