Chuang-Tzu and Prospero

Caleb Klaces on the improbable range of Christopher Middleton’s work Christopher Middleton Collected Later Poems Carcanet, £25.00   Christopher Middleton’s Collected Later Poems begins with something missing. The first poem, ‘For …

The Animals That Love You, At Dusk

I pass through the fig that is your body your compass rose in its ripeness it owns both nadir & zenith I pass above & beneath it while all around …

Returning an Echo

Peter Robinson on the aspirations of Derek Mahon’s ‘adaptations’ Derek Mahon Echo’s Grove Gallery, €22.50/€13.90 Derek Mahon’s ‘Echo’, subtitled ‘from the Latin of Ovid, Metamorphoses III, 356-402’, begins by explaining how …

Stoppages

(after M. Duchamp)   A line cast over water settles on the water skin. Salmon engage in piscine trigonometry, track the crooked trajectory of light. Pouting courtiers, indifferent to our …

The Odd Couple

The most unexpected, and as it turned out inspiring, book I read last year was Airmail (Bloodaxe, 2013), a collection of letters between the American poet Robert Bly and the Swedish Nobel …

Narrating from the Margins

Chrissy Williams Flying Into The Bear HappenStance £4.00 Fiona Moore The Only Reason for Time HappenStance £4.00 Tim Liardet Madame Sasoo Goes Bathing Shoestring £7.00 Shazea Quraishi The Courtesans Reply …

Pantheon

Pan follows you to a wet wall to pebble dash your hopes that you’d at least seen some green in the fair silos. Shivered when you felt intentions were not …

Everyday Odysseys

Clare Pollard Ovid’s Heroines Bloodaxe £9.95 Kate Tempest Brand New Ancients Picador £9.99   Ovid’s Heroides, written some time between 25 and 16 BCE, was pretty groundbreaking stuff. A series …

To all laments and purposes

Against platinum birches I want nothing here [but you].   We have trees at home. Shall I wing you the courtyard fountain’s   midnight palaver, to lull the list of …

Instruments of the imagination

In a recent feature in the FT, a journalist quotes the painter Frank Auerbach as saying ‘some people are natural draughtsmen. I sometimes feel sorry for them – you have
to work through …

Canakkale

All but a century gone. By the thousand, pinned down on slopes, on beachheads shot to death, and rawboned, ours and theirs, blown to pieces. Two-faced anthropos, late again, stirs …

How Hard Can It Be?

Keston Sutherland The Odes to TL61P Enitharmon £8.99 Simon Jarvis Eighteen Poems Eyewear £12.99 Luke Kennard A Lost Expression Salt 12.99 Cherry Smyth Test, Orange Pindrop £9.99   Well before …

Rocking On and Off the Page

Paul Muldoon Songs and Sonnets Enitharmon, £9.99 Paul Muldoon The Word on the Street Faber, £12.99 Benjamin Zephaniah (Film directed by Pamela Robertson-Pearce) To Do Wid Me Bloodaxe, £12.00 Luke …

Control

I’m reading some things Charlie wrote about cancer and Colette because I can’t sleep and because what he wrote is beautiful and it’s cold outside because it’s November and my …

2013 Competition: Commended Poems

Jennifer Militello for ‘A Dictionary of Having Been Prey in the Voice of the Grandmother’ Alex Toms for ‘Becoming Sei’ NJ Hynes for ‘The Hands Washing Us’ David HW Grubb …