Hollywood Starlet | Ivy Alvarez

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Ivy Alvarez is the author of Disturbance, her second collection, (Wales: Seren Books, 2013), and Mortal (Washington, DC: Red Morning Press, 2006).

Her poems appear in anthologies, journals and new media in many countries, including Poetry Wales, Alquimía del Fuego (Spain, 2014), Best Australian Poems (2009 and 2013), A Face to Meet the Faces (Univ. of Akron Press, 2012), The Guardian (UK, 2012), Prairie Schooner (USA, 2012) and Junctures (NZ, 2010), with individual poems translated into Russian, Spanish, Japanese and Korean.

A MacDowell and Hawthornden Fellow thrice-shortlisted for Best Poem byfourW (Australia), both Literature Wales and the Australia Council for the Arts awarded her grants towards the writing of Disturbance.

Born in the Philippines and raised in Australia, she lived in Scotland and Ireland before moving to Cardiff, Wales in 2004 and becoming a British citizen in 2010.

She now lives in Auckland, New Zealand.



What Vivien Leigh Dropped



Larry’s Hamlet; I mouth Ophelia.

He stops, makes me check our hamper for spiders,

memorabilia, fruit, wine. How asinine. Now his monologue—

the boat rocks and he goes on

pulling those oars. Fiddle-dee-dee…


Peering over, I write Vivian Mary on water.

The lake feels bottomless from here.

If we tipped, we’d disappear, like stones.

I take an apple and consider it. —Ow! My tooth!

Something small falls in. Not to be outdone,

Larry yells about a splinter in his palm.

The pain’s woken us both.

What a pair we are. Look how far

the shore. And now we must row.