To celebrate Ovid’s 2,000th anniversary, editors and poets Nessa O’Mahony and Paul Munden invited 100 poets to respond to Metamorphoses with new poems that explore the many contemporary resonances in that seminal work.
These haiku were written over three summers, camping on our piece of land near Waihi in Aotearoa New Zealand, and, for contrast, one winter sojourn there in our newly-built gypsy wagon. The land is bordered by the Mataura stream—which means ‘red face’. We call the place ‘Land of the shining stream’ or ‘River’s edge’. The eels are named Brad and Angelina. One day, we’ll build a house there. In the meantime, we’re developing the land along permaculture principles, and noting moments both practical and transcendant.
Once thought lost, this new edition revives Strange’s bizarre experimental manuscript for contemporary audiences. Allegedly written in a weekend and inspired by a paratext from Clarice Lispector, Notes to the Reader is a collection of twenty-one calls to readers from books and authors long forgotten.
Meerabai (1498-1556) was a poet, singer and dancer and a devotee of Hindu god Krishna. She is revered as one of the prominent voices of the Bhakti Movement: a movement of religious reformation which valued personal engagement with deities over traditional ritualistic practices.
Rain Clouds offers fifteen of her devotional love poems in both Hindi and English, translated by multi-lingual scholar and poet Subhash Jaireth.
Owen Bullock shows that haiku is a form that can deliver us worlds with deft subtlety and cutting precision. Each of these poems builds on the last to deliver a strong sense of place and of people. Urban Haiku has an eye for the absurdities of contemporary life, as well as its quieter, less noticed moments.
This first book of poetry by Niloofar Fanaiyan is about transit as both a physical and conceptual suspension of time and space. It touches on the intersections of people, place, culture and history experienced by travellers: the feeling of being stuck on the periphery while life continues elsewhere; and the possibilities inherent in every journey.
Jen Webb’s new collection is a series of striking prose poems that explore the ways in which personal crises and memories might be re-examined through the elusive concept of the archive. How, she asks, might we construct a personal archive to ‘make sense of the past in the work of facing and building the future’? Each of these finely wrought poems is a record of life lived through significant moments.
In Owen Bullock’s second haiku sequence with Recent Work Press, he explores the wisdom garnered from his period as a care worker for the elderly in New Zealand. These haiku display the riches of Bullock’s keen sense of observation married with his ability to get to the essence of any subject with his deft use of this most precise of Japanese forms.
This prose poetry collection takes the reader through a gallery of European art, exploring modes of representation and the eddying connections between language and visual imagery. As it does so, it probes ways in which language ‘sees’, often in intimate ways. This collection also explores human history and culture, and the links between past and present—some works of art are like a form of memory and reach directly into viewers’ personal experiences. The gallery you encounter in these pages is notionally situated in Rome, but it is only fully constituted in these pages—containing, as it does, artworks on loan from elsewhere, such as Giorgione’s famous painting La Tempesta, usually housed in Venice. Although this book is made of words, it will conduct you on an unforgettable gallery tour.
Miranda Lello’s debut collection is a deeply felt and often playful reflection on the liminal moments of contemporary life. Lello’s keen eye searches out the possibilities of new worlds as they exist in the everyday moments of work, of journeys, of love, and of living. This is a collection written on the body and mind and invested in the capacity of poetry to make us feel.
The title poem of this collection chronicles the eighteenth-century trial of Captain John Bolton for the murder of his apprentice girl, Elizabeth Rainbow, in a small village in the north of England where Paul Munden has spent most of his life. The poem’s reflection on the life writing process is complemented by other shadowings, glimpses of strange complicities and dark pastoral musings
Set in the heart of Australia, Penny Drysdale’s debut collection breaks open the prison of self to lay bare the many contradictions in contemporary Australian relationships. Love, injustice and ‘unbelonging’ weave their way through this torrid landscape like ancient creatures on a grand scale. A credit card, a mouse trap, a discarded car battery, a pile of children’s clothing all become an opportunity to examine in harsh Australian light aspects of ourselves we usually confine to the dark.
From the opening poem of Maggie Shapley’s first collection Proof, we know we are in the company of a thoughtful, sometimes restless, poet. Here, in explorations of childhood and family, memory and loss, belonging and dislocation, we find every word conveying a powerful sense of lived encounters and experience. This is poetry characterised by close observation, a restrained wit and a fine precision of language.
Black Tulips are symbols of mystery and elegance and are hard to grow—a bit like writing poems. There is always a sense of mystery around how a poem makes it on to the page. How it sits beneath the surface as a garden bulb does until the conditions are right for it to begin to sprout and push into being.