Published in Overland Issue 209 Summer 2012 Uncategorized Winter war Maria Takolander At dawn the birch trees are ice-smacked: shocked and glassy. The man limps across the snow, like a toad, his only illness memory. Light presses against his eyes, like a shard of the bottle he broke over the night — though it was the evening, softer than skin, that had tempted him from hiding. He recalls the suckling: iron-bitter as the earth, yet river-silken. Then the black sky: pricked with stars like a medieval device and cold as iron. How the birch trees, pale as naked men, were flayed against them. Maria Takolander Maria Takolander is the author of a book of poems, Ghostly Subjects (Salt Publishing 2009), which was shortlisted for a Queensland Premier’s Literary Award in 2010, and her poems have appeared annually in The Best Australian Poems (Black Inc.) and/or The Best Australian Poetry (UQP) since 2005. She was recently awarded an Australia Council grant to complete a collection, The Double, which will be released by Text Publishing in 2013. She is a Senior Lecturer in Literary Studies and Creative Writing at Deakin University in Geelong. More by Maria Takolander Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places. If you like this piece, or support Overland’s work in general, please subscribe or donate. Related articles & Essays First published in Overland Issue 228 2 December 20222 December 2022 Unions In search of lost bargains: An interview with Scott Fitzgerald, Ryan Mead-Hunter and Francis Russell of the Bargain Hunters podcast Scott Robinson and Danni McGrath We discovered Bargain Hunters: The Curtin NTEU EBA Podcast as our own university, Monash, and the local branch of the NTEU) enter their own bargaining round. After years of workers bearing the burden of rapid COVID changes, cost of living pressures, overwork and decades of growing job insecurity, this bargaining round feels different: an opportunity for workers to articulate a vision of the university against the neoliberalised, corporate managerialism that dominates the sector and most workplaces in the country. First published in Overland Issue 228 1 December 20221 December 2022 Reviews Calling the racist a racist: Janaka Malwatta’s blackbirds don’t mate with starlings John Kinsella Malwatta is a skilled and motivated user of tone and tonality in expression, and he shifts between perpetrator and victim with a disturbing but powerful ease: we hear the racists in the hospital, we hear them at the barbecue, and we hear the racism coming from the mouths of white leaders and dissemblers.