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Possibility of Flight

The Possibility of Flight
Lia Hills

Winner of the 2008 IP Picks Best Poetry Award
at the cutting edge of contemporary writing.

The poems in Lia Hills’ first collection journey from ‘artesian memories’ of the Australian desert to the ‘shifting territory of the gods’ in rural Pakistan, as they glide with a wing shift between love, language and faith.





Lia Hills

Lia is a poet, novelist and translator living in Melbourne. Her work has been published, performed and translated both in Australia and overseas, and has won numerous awards.

She is editor and co-initiator of the poetry section of Moving Galleries, a poetry/art project on trains in Melbourne.

Her forthcoming publications include a crossover novel, The Beginner’s Guide to Living (Text Publishing), and a translation of Marie Darrieussecq’s acclaimed novel, Tom Est Mort, from French into English.


PB ISBN 9781921479076

GB £12 €14

eBook ISBN 9781921869754

AU $13


Lia Hills takes lyric poetry and fills it with philosophical nous. Her vision begins with intimacy, then looks outward - taking in phenomena - a 'song rises in search of a tongue' and 'absence travels the duskpaths' until the poet realises 'it is the emptiness that sings'. The language is sparse and musical. The subjects range from war to 'memory games', love and family. Hills takes a flight from the moral self, out over the possibilities of prayer and the imagination, back to the music of love mentioned in the great poems of Rumi. This is a rich and rewarding book.
– Robert Adamson

There is something special about Lia Hills’ poetry, something ineffable that takes flight ‘out of the humus of emergent things’.
– Greg Delanty





an anatomy of birds

You found it in the humus
of emergent things, its
feather skull one hundredth
of its skyborne weight, grey
treasure gone, keel clung to
its breast no longer obliged
to guide and pitch, your fingers,
still with their flesh, decadent
against this picked white, your
density fondling its hollowness,
the cavities that once dissected
light, one feather fixed to its
ladder spine, Jurassic toes coiled
to their fate, your hand defies the
giant’s requisite to crush, this fragile
survey of the possibility of flight.


at night I rise to gather lost words
they collect in edges
           these invisible demons
make for consequential myth
I could ride the rise of the bête-noire
          crusade against language
it’s lyric I seek
but not in an a cappella of newsprint
          crystal ball    rhetorician’s tool
the proof in the unhappening    the raw mix
entends-tu le glas qui sonne?
as dawn crawls
it’s dust I find
lament my dissociation of sensibility
                             on a molecular scale
am I to become atomised
          speak the language of the blind?

[Read more on GoogleBooks]