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Book launch (VIC): Television by Kate Middleton

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You’re invited to a celebration of Television, the award-winning poet Kate Middleton’s new collection. Part criticism, part autobiography, Television is always acute in its recollection of the emotions inspired by small-screen drama – from Twin Peaks to Buffy to early morning evangelical programs. As the Sydney Morning Herald wrote, ‘without apology, Television invites us into the escape of TV.’

The book will be launched by Alice Allan, writer and host of the Poetry Says podcast, on Wednesday 24 April at The Crystal Palace in Carlton North. Attendees are asked to arrive at 6.30pm for a 7pm start. Copies of Television will be available for purchase on the night through Paperback Bookshop. There will also be light refreshments provided including (!) cupcakes with Luke Perry's face on them, courtesy of the author. (Television is dedicated in memory to the actor, who played teen heartthrob Dylan McKay on Beverly Hills, 90210, and who passed away in 2019.) 

This event is free, but RSVP is essential as space is limited. Please register on this page as soon as possible to avoid missing out.



In her new collection Television, award-winning poet Kate Middleton considers the emotional impact that television programs had on her formative years – from childhood cartoons Astro Boy and Roadrunner to series like Pretty Little LiarsBuffy the Vampire SlayerTwin Peaks and Beverly Hills 90210. These were ‘the shows I watched to cry, to feel/ the hot gash angst of teenaged-ness’. In poems that expand like mini-essays, the poet explores the feelings evoked by these shows, the shame and longing, the regret and desire, and the different kinds of identification they encouraged, especially in a teenage girl. But the focus is also on the poet as an adult, thinking back over her adolescent responses, about the ways in which television plays with time and reality, and the extent to which its jumble of images reflects her own multi-faceted consciousness, if it hasn’t in fact formed it –‘the one whose interests are too voluminous, the one who tries/ to write deeply into one idea and is instead immediately/ tugged sideways…I try to do too much and/ my attention shatters, ricochets among ruins’.



Kate Middleton’s collections with Giramondo are Fire Season, which won the Western Australian Premier’s Award for Poetry in 2009; Ephemeral Waters, which was shortlisted for the 2014 NSW Premier’s award for Poetry, and most recently Passage, published in 2017. Her new book, Television is forthcoming with Giramondo in February 2024.



Alice Allan is a writer and editor based in Melbourne, Australia. She produces the podcast Poetry Says. Her poems have appeared in Rabbit, Griffith Review, Southerly, Australian Book Review, Westerly and Contemporary Australian Feminist Poetry, and shortlisted for the Blake Poetry Prize.


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