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E. A. Gleeson has that rare talent of lifting a moment of intimacy into the realm of universal truth, of capturing instances of recollection and infusing them with emotion and thoughtful language where every word gleams.

Maisie and the Black Cat Band is her second award winning book with IP. The first, In Between the Dancing, won the IP Best Poetry Award, while this one was Highly Commended in the 2011 Awards.



E. A. Gleeson

E. A. Gleeson was born in the town of Coleraine but spent most of her childhood on a Soldier Settlement farm at Camperdown in Victoria’s Western District. She has travelled extensively including two years working as an Australian Volunteer in the Pacific. She has received degrees from Monash, La Trobe and Australian Catholic Universities.

Her professional life has encompassed fields as diverse as Education, Media, International Aid and the Funeral Industry.

Her poems have been published in Australia, Ireland and the USA, her essays in The Age, The Australian, The Sydney Morning Herald and Island.

After a lifetime of moving, Anne has settled into living in the Daylesford region with her husband Steve. She divides her time between walking the trails of the Hepburn Shire, writing, community involvement, enjoying the company of those she loves, and working as a Funeral Director and Celebrant.

BuyIP   Kindle

ISBN 9781921869440 (PB, 70pp)
140mm x 216mm

AUD $25 USD $18 NZD $28 GBP £12 EUR €14
ISBN 9781921869457 (ePub) AUD $12 USD $9 NZD $14 GBP £6 EUR €7

"E. A. Gleeson has done it again, with poems delivering to the reader intense moments of love, curious whimsy, small surprises that go deep (like a son bringing her a poem he wrote, and a strange tale of lost dogs after a storm). If ekphrasis truly means ‘a lucid, self-contained description’, then every poem in this book qualifies as a virtuoso display of that formidable and endearing skill."
– Kevin Brophy

"E.A. Gleeson’s eye for revelatory detail, her ability to come
up with phrases that turn observation into exploration and
description into revelation – these are the qualities in her
poems which leave us recommitted to the world and to the
wonder of language."
– Ross Gillett



link to In between the dancing



Maisie and The Black Cat Band

Everyone remembers a night at The Palais.
First kiss in the stairwell. Dancing till doors
closed and then some, learning to ride a bike
on the dance floor, the night she performed
before she was famous, when he went home
with his date’s best friend, that Canadian
group who did three encores, the night they
heard that outrageous football poem for the
very first time. But what I want to hear
are the Palais stories about Maisie McNair.

I want to know that the little girl sent to boarding
school when her parents died, and who spent all
those hours practising scales and arpeggios, had
some fun with her deft fingers and her perfect ear.
I want to believe that when Maisie was abandoned
by her war-damaged husband, she leapt at the chance
to set up a band, that it wasn’t just the few shillings
she needed for the children, but the thrill of The Palais,
of getting the crowd going, of playing alongside
sax and drums, of knowing it would happen again.

I want someone to tell me about the sparkle in her eye
as she looped her lipstick onto the circle of her mouth,
to give me the swishing sound of her dress as she
and the German Shepherd she kept for protection,
strode along Main Road. I want to hear her calling
her band members into perfect pitch with her sure voice.
Give me a picture of her sitting at the piano, her eyes
alive to the dancers, her fingers light on the keys,
answering requests with a single finger tapping a bar
or two and then her hands leaping at the ivory.

Let me hear The Rose of Allendale ring through the Palais
as she gives the romantics the waltz they crave. When they
are cheek to cheek and hardly moving at all, let me picture
her sending a wink to Norm on sax and Dunc on drums, so
that in an instant, she sets the lovers apart by pounding
out the wearing of the green, and then upping the tempo
from Waltz to Charleston to Swing until unable to move
another step, they clap for mercy. Let me witness the unfazed
musicians playing on and on, until the cheering of the crowd
is louder than Maisie and her Black Cat Band.

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