‘Lynette Arden lets us sit in the window seat while Travelling Through the Unexpected, as she distils crisp moments into memorable free-verse snapshots, stunning villanelles, haiku or tanka.
Arden observes the fringe of fur on hippo ears; the giraffe’s neck, escalator-long; and how the cricket stutter stops at a footfall. Equally adept at portraying her fellow humans, Arden notices the optimism as the ninety-year-old applies sunscreen and the migraine sufferer’s view of the edge of a whirling fan. So sit back and enjoy this poetic journey, confidently and masterfully driven by a poet with depth, diversity and insight.’ – Jude Aquilina
Travelling Through the Unexpected inscribes the arc of a life’s journey with poignant glimpses along the way. While she employs a variety of poetic forms, her dexterity with images and succinctness particularly demonstrate Arden’s mastery of Japanese brief forms. It’s a world of random moments, pathos and acute observation where desiccated leaves whisper in a soft gossiping, rain slaps the glass / trickling summer dust / to a map of winter, wind scoops / the hollow of the letter box / slides under the door, a water jug on a train tilts against the horizon, a dying sister is commemorated Her hair…the colour of poured tea, the chirping of small birds pricks the air, a lake brimming like an eyeful of tears. This is Lynette Arden’s first full collection. The wait has been worth it.’ – Rob Walker
‘Travelling Through the Unexpected is a tended garden in which a wilderness grows. Lynette Arden wakes the domestic in these poems, which read like the plants that grow best … brought by birds or the wind, prospering between careful cultivars. Travelling Through the Unexpected is a book of kind, astute, intelligent poems, and it feels patiently fabricated, waited for, a river that’s reached its sea. These poems travel narrow roads deep north, and they take slow boats east; they sail the Nile south, and they safari in Africa; they turn paintings inside out and find our faces there; they long for love long after love let go; they poke fingers in the eyes of the pompous, and they reincarnate Vincent in the suburbs—and they do all this with a quiet mastery of forms borrowed from all quarters of the world, all the while standing in a kitchen cooking quinces, sitting at an office desk after hours turning emails into prayers.’ – Mark Tredinnick
‘Lynette Arden’s competence and understanding of Japanese poetic genres are evident in her free verse too. Concise expression, clear imagery and a sense of the immediate are hallmarks of this collection. Individualism and independent thinking are apparent, balanced by a respect for history and deep regard for the natural world. Compassionate awareness of the lives of animals, both domesticated and untamed, bring an appealing dimension to her writing. The collection is expertly but unobtrusively sequenced in a way that invites the reader to keep turning pages: explore something new.’ – Beverley George
Available through Ginninderra Press and online bookstores as a paperback and e-book.