Jill Chan: The Smell of Oranges (2003)

Raewyn Alexander, ed.: Magazine 1 [loaded with arts, fire and boodle] (November 2003)

Jill Chan, The Smell of Oranges, Wellington: Earl of Seacliff Art Workshop, 2003. ISBN 1-86942-028-4. 64 pp. RRP $19.95

Jill Chan: The Smell of Oranges (2003)

One of the best things about editing a poetry magazine is the people you meet, albeit (much of the time) vicariously. Jill Chan intrigued me from the first. Her letters were terse and unforthcoming, the poems short and to-the-point, but with an almost disturbing perfection.

That was a few years ago now, and the poems have kept on appearing, growing ever more complex, but without losing that air of uncanny precision, of a carefully husbanded wound. It’s lovely to see them gathered in a book, confirming my original belief that here we have something quite extraordinary: a miniaturist whose art is on a grand scale, “not ever breaking at the pressure.”


Magazine 1 (2003): 76.

[130 wds]

Magazine 1 (2003)

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