Sunday, 25 November 2012

This is Not a Book Blog

You okay? You're okay, aren't you? I hate thinking of you not being okay. Here's a new post about some poetry. And an announcement that I have two readings in London coming up, largely to read from the new poetry collection. One is for Broadcast in the Betsey Trotwood, details HERE! The other is for Goldsmiths, details NOWHERE! I think it's probably just for Goldsmiths students. In the latter I'll read a bit from Holophin too. We're down to the last seven copies of Holophin, I have three of them and my mum is threatening to buy the last four in order to improve the eBay resale value.


Nobody with a pulse needs me to tell them to read Matthew Welton. I know this because whenever anyone asks me which poetry I've been enjoying recently and I say, among other names, "Matthew Welton," they say, "Well, obviously Matthew Welton," and roll their eyes like I just retweeted a major news story. What you may need telling is that Welton has a ltd edition chapbook out with F.U.N.E.X., a subsidiary of Eggbox Publishing. And also that it is one of my favourite things he has ever done. It is called Waffles.

You want me to tell you WHY I like it so much? What is this, a fucking A-level English exam?

Ok, first off Welton's sense of rhythm is so strong it's like Art Blakey is using your head as a bongo. This is the first time I have ever encountered an ear-worm in poetry: I read it once and its lines were already swirling around in my head for the rest of the day. It is the funniest, wisest, saddest portrayal of psychological dissonance this side of 19th century Russia. As with a lot of Welton's work, the process is telegraphed pretty clearly, but where most of us are happy to attempt a process, make ironic reference to that process and shove thre resulting pile of matchsticks to our editors with a desultory sneer, Welton builds a fleet of goddamn schooners. (Process in this case being a looping, reincorporating pattern of words and themes, the waffles acting as a grid, a licence to ruminate, a two-way symbol for meaning and meaninglessness). So basically it's like art, but GOOD.

It can be acquired from Eggbox TOTALLY JUST HERE YOU CLICK HERE AND YOU GO THERE OH WHAT A WORLD! I have no. 160 of 300, so hurry the hell up, y'hear?

And now a collection by a poet whose work you may not be familiar with yet (maybe I'll make this into another regular feature I do once and never return to again), but whose work I've been enjoying just as much these last few weeks, Neil Fraser Addison's Stealth. Exile. Inventory. This is another beautifully produced boutique publication, this time from OWT Press and you can try to acquire it FROM THIS PLACE! I think I'll just cite three bits I love from this substantial collection so as not to just type out the whole thing:

"Time is a thunderstorm of dunce caps, one season long."


"There is always somebody
appalled by death alone,
insisting on the clutter of damnation

as if it represented
full-employment for God..."


"Of course, what the world
                        needs now
is another pantheon of immortal hicks
slaying their every escape-route."


Okay, must go. There are piles of paper to file from the whole of this year and it's already drinking hot alcohol in public season again.