Women's talk by the Arrernte Women of Central Australia

Arelhekenhe Angkentye Women’s Talk Poems of Lyapirtneme from Arrernte Women in Central Australia

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There is healing in this poetry.

These are our words.

From our country.

Our lands. Our spirits.

For all the troubles we face every day, we are a passionate people.

When we hear these poems, we know, we are lovers of life.

After selling out its first three print runs and having poems selected for Best of Australian Poems 2021 by Australian Poetry, a second edition of this beautiful anthology was needed! It is being released on the new imprint of Running Water Community Press (formerly Ptilotus Press) from Mparntwe Alice Springs and features poems written by over twenty Arrernte women around the refreshing Arrernte concept of Lyapirtneme.

This second edition includes an additional poem by local heroines, Margaret Kemarre Turner (Arrernte Elder and author) and Maureen Jipiyiliya Nampijinpa O’Keefe (Warlpiri/Kaytetye author), as well as a reinvigorated design by award winning book designer, Gemma Banks. It is an important contribution to the growing body of First Nations literature, particularly from remote Australia.

‘Even amongst the extraordinary body of one hundred poems that constitute the first volume of a new annual ‘best of’ series, Best of Australian Poems, the two poems by Arrente poets, Theresa Penangke Alice and Shirley Kngwarraye Turner, shimmer. Two completely different poems, ‘Metal bird’ and ‘Family are like rocks’, but both emanating a profound generosity of knowledge and voice. We are gratefully richer for such ‘Women’s Talk’ gifts, but for myself, as a reader, I actually feel life-changed.’ — Jacinta Le Plastrier, CEO Australian Poetry

‘Lyapirtneme is an Arrernte word that means growing back, returning. It’s like if a bushfire went through the land, and all the trees burnt down, and the roots underground are still alive. When the rain comes you see little shoots growing out of the bottom of the tree, growing back again.’ — Therese Perrurle Ryder, Arrernte Elder

‘I love this book. It holds so much value. Each poem is a gift and it has been put together with so much care.’ – Ellen van Neerven, Mununjali poet

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