Thursday, 28 August 2008
Stephen Romer: Poetry Doesn't Bite
I've said here before how puzzled I am that most literary bloggers seem to run a mile from contemporary poetry. Stephen Romer's Yellow Studio might be worth trying if you are suffering from this particular phobia. It's one of the best collections of 2008 and a substantial volume where all his skills of tender eroticism and lovely fluency of line are on display. The final section of the book, which contains a series of poems written after the death of his father, is particularly striking. Published by Carcanet under its "Oxford Poets" rubric (an obscurity explained by the fact that they bought up Oxford University Press's outstanding poetry list a few years ago when the venerable OUP's marketing people told them to junk their poetry) this volume was even reviewed in The Observer when it came out, a treatment normally reserved for the poetry celebs. Go on, try it.