Modern Queer Poets / edited by Richard Porter
London : Pilot Editions, 2019
What has been added to our collection this month? Here are a few highlights:
Modern Queer Poets is the first poetry anthology published by artist Richard Porter's Pilot Press - a neatly square, pocket-sized book that showcases queer poets writing today. Contributions were made via both invitation and open call, resulting in a broad and varied range of work - CA Conrad, Eileen Myles and Wayne Koestenbaum sit alongside Alanna McArdle, Timothy Thornton and Sophie Robinson. Portable and packed with exciting new material, this rich selection comes with a choice of two beautiful covers by artist Matt Connors (we managed to scoop up the dark blue cover!).
The moon, the night sky... enduring themes for the poet. But on the cover of this handmade limited-edition pamphlet, it’s different every time. Each copy is designed and stitched by Maria Isakova Bennett, and forms part of her output Coast to Coast to Coast. Poet Isabel Bermudez once worked as a camerawoman and documentary filmmaker in Columbia, and won the journal's second portfolio poetry prize. The bare trees in these poems reconnect us with the magic of winter and recast the moon as “new vellum: salt, breath, bone”.
We first became aware of picture book superstars Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s latest collaboration during December’s general election. Were we reading too much into this alien Romeo and Juliet rhyming tale of the Smeds, who are red, and the Smoos, who are blue, who teach their children to keep away from each other until Janet the Smed and Bill the Smoo fall in love and run away together? It seems not. When we got to the end it was dedicated “To all the children of Europe”. Whatever your politics, you’ll be charmed by Donaldson’s nonsense words, Scheffler’s galaxy of colourful aliens and its message of reconciliation. Just to reassure you, in this Romeo and Juliet for under 5s everybody survives.