• Felicity Plunkett and Alison Wain

On Felicity Plunkett, Sunturn

I don’t delve into poetry nearly as much as I should, and I didn’t know Felicity Plunkett, but I absolutely love this poem, Sunturn. It’s about cycles and about stillness — and stillness is something that is increasingly rare in our lives.

This poem made me think of the stillness of winter, which is one of my favourite times in Canberra; the cold is hard, but it makes you feel so alive. And when it’s so cold, it seems to me that the world breathes — not air, but water, because when air is cold, it becomes dense. As the air cools down at night, it squeezes the water out, and that water becomes suspended as droplets of fog, and falls as dew and becomes frozen as puddles, and it’s really still. That’s until the sun comes up, and pours all its energy into the landscape, and the water starts moving again, and then it’s as though the whole world wakes up and breathes in all the water. That’s what this poem makes me think of.

Alison Wain





‘I waited for you winterlong’
                        — Neil Young

Midwinter. Black
sun in motion, even
at its still point. Long

the winter, long
this night, this
waiting. In this white

moment no
momentum, still
the flicker of our name. Keep

me in the light
love, while you
winter alone. The tide

pulls back to come
forwards, holds itself
gelid into itself. Now

things pull, tip
from stasis, lean
into new. Slow

fold of year
into year, past
into fiction. Break

the stride
of dark spirits, outpace
their company. Step

with me gold where others
walked, ghosted
by future suns.

Felicity Plunkett