What has been added to our collection this month? Here are a few highlights:
These stunning typewriter poems by avant-garde concrete poet and musician Henri Chopin are printed on beautiful white-flecked, transparent, iridescent and silvered papers. Also known as dactylopoèmes, they are a visual complement to Chopin’s experiments in sound, which helped lay the foundations of ‘Poesie sonore’. The limited-edition pamphlet is accompanied by ‘Phases de lune’, a concertina-fold sheet signed by the poet. We’re the only library (as far as we know) to own a copy in the UK. Best read by the light of the moon!
A young boy is shot dead by soldiers and a whole town immediately goes deaf. A young couple come to grief in the chaotic aftermath. A madame and her girls kill off individual soldiers while running a puppet theatre. Ilya Kaminsky, a hard-of-hearing Ukrainian American poet, has created a deceptively simple cinematic fable of survival and loss in a world where deafness becomes a way to manifest rebellion against the cruelties of the oppressor.
This month we acquired a set of pamphlets published over the last five years by Scottish based Tapsalteerie. The design is delicate but contemporary with an array of striking covers. 'Glisk' is Scottish for glimpse, or brief moment or instant, and Sarah Stewart’s poems do just that, capturing the moment her mother was refused a pint in a pub in 1978 and a woman caught stealing tampons in a well-known chemists. As well as drawing attention to female experiences these seventeen poems also capture highly relatable moments including advice on how to leave a party and a celebration of the board game Cluedo; “as if / we could pack / any savagery / so carefully away.”