COUNT THE WAYS – Paperback


Linda Godfrey is one of Australia’s finest practitioners of the short form. In Count the Ways she explores how “modern poetry is all about the small incidents from a day,” relocating the small and quotidian from the margins to the centre. In this extraordinary book of prose poetry exploring the complexities of identity and the haunting nuances of poetic influence, Godfrey constructs unforgettable moments where Lily Tomlin, Anne Carson and Billy Joel share the page. Perhaps most importantly, she uses prose poetry’s ubiquitous box of fully justified sentences to explore the postfeminist cage for women. In deeply stirring and indelible moments, Godfrey warns the reader: “Be wary of my grandmother’s rifle under my bed, a piece of black stocking tied around the handle …” —Cassandra Atherton

Linda Godfrey’s prose poems haunt, winning the small hours’ trophy for sensual, beguiling and playful details:

Kublai trails behind her, begging for another story about the daughters of the wind.

pomegranate and peach jam simmers, Penelope deters another suitor, starts another draft… a beggar emerges from the gloom, hunched furtive, misshapen as dobs of dog

Who gave you permission to rain your gloomy green weeds on us?

and, seeping into everything, the sea, the sea.—Julie Chevalier

Billy Collins says at the end of a poem he wants the reader to be slightly disoriented, like he drove them outside of town at night and dropped them off in a cornfield. Having just read Count the Ways I find myself knee-deep in that cornfield. I will find my way back to town but please, leave me here with these words a while longer. This is cool, daring, edgy poetry. —Ali Whitelock

Edited by Michele Seminara & Alise Blayney

ISBN: 978-0-6483713-2-8 

Chapbook, 24 pages, softcover. Postage: $2 in Australia, $5 international


Linda Godfrey is a writer, poet and editor and has a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Technology Sydney. She has published poetry and short stories in anthologies and online. Linda was the Program Manager of the Wollongong Writers’ Festival from 2015 to 2018. She curated Rocket Readings — readings of poetry that were part of Sydney Writers’ Festival and Viva la Gong from 2007 to 2018. She is a fiction reader for Overland and was the online fiction editor for Overland Autumn 2018. She has been a recipient of a Varuna residency and an Australian Society of Authors mentorship. Linda loves a prose poem and is an ancient history tragic. She has edited three award-winning books, including one Miles Franklin winner. She has taught writing, both short stories and poetry, in the community to adults for many years.