Monthly Archives: June 2014

individual tax return instructions

– a poem by Monica Carroll for the 30th of June (the end of the financial year).


As this date has passed, you’ll now have to buy a copy of The Grapple Annual No. 1. But keep an eye out (and watch our Facebook and Twitter pages) as we’ll soon have more featured works online  on their given dates.


Writer, Monica Carroll, is published in a variety of journals and anthologies such as Meniscus, Burley, DecomP, Cordite and Idiom. She has won many writing and poetry awards and performs, occasionally, in Canberra. In addition to writing Monica likes smooth round pebbles and morning bird-song.



Four Days

 by Yolande Norris



Monday morning
I buy towels and tiny clothes,
feel good about the world,
under the hum of chainstore lights

Maybe that’s the first thing I notice.


That night with an aching back
I break open a pomegranate in my hands for our dinner
The flesh stains everything,
red under my nails.

I’m slow to eat
Slow to sleep

The moon is full.





affairs in order
Readying for the unknowable.
Everything around
becomes rapidly irrelevant
Preparing for life
as if preparing for death





The day before the 7th of June,
A blue sky fast cloud winter’s day
through the passenger window of our little car
focussing on bare trees, on beautiful details before
I suppose,
everything is different.
At lights
long lights
meeting the glance of drivers alongside
going about their day with no idea
In the next lane
lives are changing.
It would be funny any other time.
Every bump and halt mocks my exhausted bones.
Stuck seated
wanting to stand
breathe furiously
walk furiously
as if as long as my feet touch earth I’ll be okay.
Second day without sleep.


Sometime that night
drugs flash cold in my veins.
I rest

My body works on.
The clock pulls slow hands through thick air till sunrise
I feel numb and stupid
But I am determined
you will be born
and not cut free
So that this has counted for something.





there you are
and bigger than I could have known
a displaced weight upon my chest.

the only one crying is me
so they hurry you away
there’s still
to be done.

I remember to ask ‘what is it?’
like you’re supposed to.
A boy.



It’s just me, after a time
finally, emptily, I sleep
before, empty and aching, I awake.



From June 4 to 7, we shared Yolande’s poem Four Days, in advance of the release of The Grapple Annual No. 1. You can now buy a copy online.


Yolande Norris is a writer and producer based in Canberra. She studied painting at the ANU School of Art and wrote on her canvases. Her long-suffering lecturer said ‘it’s not really painting is it?’ This year is the first time she’s told anyone about her poetry.


Annual a-comin’

Yes, it’s been a while, but we’re still here and The Grapple Annual No. 1 is indeed a-comin’. Though we haven’t been very visually present online, we’ve not at all been shirking.  Behind the scenes, we’ve read through all the submissions, we’ve made our selection and we’ve emailed out the verdicts. Commiserations, exhortations and celebrations a-plenty! Most recently though, we’ve been grappling away with a variety of edits: agonising over poem commas, sharing the heavy-shifting of paragraphs within longform behemoths, and everything in between. On that note, an assurance to those last few contributors who haven’t heard from us in a while: we’re getting to you super soon. You’re definitely not forgotten. Thank you for being wonderful and patient. We really do have the best contributors an inaugural Annual could hope for.

So yes, our initial endeavour has taken longer than anticipated (by us at least), but now’s the time, speaking of contributors, to get down to the buzz and the business. Specifics! Allow us to reverse striptease, if you will, by putting things on. On this page. Yes, over the coming days, we’ll gradually update the list below (along with our Twitter and Facebook pages) with our impressive roster of contributors to The Grapple Annual No. 1.

Flabbergastingly exciting? Correctamundo.

We’ll also gradually start sharing things like excerpts, interviews, an entire piece or two, and a surprise or three, all in advance of (and beyond) the launch of the Annual in both bound and ebook form. Pretty much every work in the Annual relates to a date, so each contributor gets their very own featured online anniversary shindig, and you’re invited.

But first, here’s that growing list of contributors. Watch this space over the coming days and by the time the list is fully announced, we’ll have launch details, release details and details on how you can get all of this into your mitts, eyes and minds. Yes!




The Grapple Annual No. 1 (2014)


Mount Olympos, a short story by Jane Downing (January 1)

Notes from Shanghai, a short story by Ella Jeffery (January 17)

Event, Tour, Shutter, a short story triptych by Kate Hall (February 1)

The First of April, memoir by Alexandra Neill (April 1)

Red Eyes, a short story by Raphael Kabo (April 8)

– The Emergent Story of the Australian Frontier, an essay by Paul W Newbury (April 25)

– Travelling left, a short story by Irma Gold (May 4)

Petrel Migration, art by Paul Heppell (May 10)

– We Are All Flesha poem by Andy Jackson (June 2)

Four Days, poetry by Yolande Norris (June 7)

– The Day She Wed, a short story by Tadhg Muller (June 24)

individual tax return instructions, a poem by Monica Carroll (June 30)


– The Penultimate Report of Sergeant Burns, a short story by David Stevens (July 16)

The Sun Eater, Catalonia, 17 July 1936 to 17 July 2013, Miró and Picasso, a poem by Andrew Galan (July 17)

– Moonlandinga short story by David Spitzkowsky (July 20)

Strange Creatures, two short fictions by Alyson Miller (July 26)

Unconditional, a poem by Charlotte Clutterbuck (August 9)

Paper Sky, memoir by Annette Ong (August 23)

Hunting Season, 4350, a poem by Vanessa Page (September 21)

The Death of Narcissus, a short story by Georgia Kartas (October 18)

– Glut, a comic by Ben Rosenthal and Mike Perry (October 21)

Sequence #1, Sequence #3 and Sequence #8, poetry by Greg Gould (October 27)

October 31, a short story by Nick Marland (October 31)

He was close, a short story by D A Shorr (November 1)

– Grim X-pectations, non-fiction by Sonya Deanna Terry (November 20)

Ants, a comic by Finbah Neill (November 21)

Reef Knot, a poem by Les Wicks (November 30)

– The Misunderstood Prophet, non-fiction by Steven Gepp (Dec 14)

– We Three, a short story by Sian Campbell (December 24)

– This one is true., a poem by Eleanor Malbon (December 25)

with additional artworks throughout by Issi Bailetti, Grace Blake, Sarah McCauley, Kayla Piris and Shu Shu Zheng.


…and more a-comin’!