4 out of 5 stars
Wandering through the library just before they shut for the latest lockdown after Christmas, I spotted this on the display table and thought I would grab a copy. I had a vague recollection that it was on my TBR and it turned out that it was.
It is a strange collection in some ways, there are poems he imagines an abandoned AI would write, poems on bluebirds and foxes, a poem about a conversation with time and another on waking. The form of each poem changes from short stanzas to long more immersive writing, some of them flow like water over rocks, in others, he has chosen words that deliberately jar against each other.
sunbeams at your fingers
are all the words you wish on me
the patterns of your dust
with nowhere to land,
no page or port or platform, no
whiteness to be seen
nor silence to be heard by,
no form on earth to catch them
as they fall, they still fall
I first read this a little while ago and have only got around to reviewing it recently. I looked a the scant notes that I had made and went back through looking at the poems that I liked and found others that when I first read it, hadn’t had an impact on me that they did the second time of dipping into the book. It is probably a sign of a good collection that each time you venture within the covers something different is revealed. I didn’t really notice it at the time, but the cover in itself is quite shocking, I find the image of a scarecrow with a gas mask has an element of folk horror; having the dog there diffuses it a little. I think that I might have to get my own copy of this.
Three Favourite Poems
Blank Pages Dream