Metaphysics is an attempt to understand and resist violence in human interactions mutually and with our environments. This long poem in four parts is a lament for the trauma and tragedy of war, a lament for invasive usages of the biosphere, and a lament for the persistence of the many forms of colonialism. It is also a document of belief – that peace, justice and respectful human responses to the land can be learnt and enacted by all people. As a vegan anarchist pacifist, and an environmentalist and peace activist of many years, John Kinsella will always believe there are ways through the horror without resorting to violence.
Overwhelmed by conflicted versions
of light, the pupil cannot hold its
positions – a juvenile bird of any
battlefield suddenly ‘opened’ is
as traumatised as an older bird.
Only a few months ago, a black-
throated accentor was seen in Ukraine.
It’s what’s called a rare vagrant in
the region – will it return next autumn?
How many birds have been forgotten
or unable to enter new memories
in so many zones … of Australia?
These catastrophes of invasion,
these imposed and disrupted time-
lines. How to discuss in medias
res amidst the keening. The keening.