Channel 19

Todd Dills

Poetry of the road

| January 27, 2009

The Huffington Post has this story about the Australian Red Room Company poetry group’s search for three Australian haulers to collaborate with three mainstream poets on poems about life on the road. Red Room’s “Dust Poems” project hinges on a live event at the Overflow in Olympic Park in Sydney March 21 and, according to the organizers, is aimed at capturing the reality of “>often ignored, repudiated and misunderstood truckies,” in Aussie parlance, who “see more sides to this country and its people than just about anyone else.”

Sound familliar? I guess the wider culture in Australia has misconceptions about haulers similar to those in the U.S. In the Huffington Post story, Red Room artistic director Johanna Featherstone put it more bluntly: “>amphetamine-taking, abusive types who drive at speed and cause a lot of road accidents and kill animals,” she said, paraphrasing the nation’s view of truckers.

Now where’s the New York City creative outfit hosting three owner-operator poets in Battery Park?

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Todd Dills

Todd Dills is Senior Editor of Overdrive magazine and writes from Nashville, Tenn. He frequently covers business, regulatory and lifestyle topics for the magazine and at His work on the “CSA’s Data Trail” series in Overdrive about the federal CSA program was awarded the highest honor in trade journalism – the “Grand Neal” – by American Business Media at the 2014 Jesse H. Neal Awards. Dills’ Channel 19 blog covers a grab bag of on-highway hearsay, owner-operator news and driver views from the roadways the nation over. His work in trucking journalism builds on a background of news feature, fiction and other creative writing and editing. Find him here at the Channel 19 blog and via his Twitter feed, or send tips to or via phone at 205-907-2481.


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