What has been added to our collection this month? Here are a few highlights:
Poems in the Case / Michael Bartholomew-Biggs
Beeston, Nottingham : Shoestring Press, 2018
Michael Bartholomew-Biggs has joined a tradition of murder mysteries written in verse, following in the footsteps of Dorothy Porter’s The Monkey’s Mask, Deryn Rees-Jones’ Quiver, and Matthew Sweeney and John Hartley-Williams who co-wrote a satirical murder mystery prose novel Death Comes to the Poets. Set on a writing retreat in rural Kent where the poets are attending a workshop called 'Delighting in the Dark Side', tensions arise and two mysterious deaths occur. Bartholomew-Biggs has a lot of fun writing poems in the voices of the various poets on the retreat. But humour aside, clearly poets have murderous minds. Should we be watching our backs at the National Poetry Library?
It won’t go well / selected articles of S.J. Fowler
Kingston-upon-Thames : Kingston University Press, 2018
Yes, it’s another book on poetry theory, but this one is both readable and pocketable! Plus it packs in plenty of fresh insights from experimental poet Steven J. Fowler. He muses that there’s ‘too much poetry’, that it absorbs our attitudes to sex and violence, that the dull cliques of most poetry readings can be relieved by treating the page as performance, whilst exploring his own personal poetics: ‘my poems are a toxic waste’. There’s also a ‘How I did it’ essay written for the Poetry School, on a piece inspired by W.S. Graham - a poet who’s the subject of our current interactive exhibition, Constructing Spaces.
If you can cut, you can collage : from paper scraps to works of art / Hollie Chastain
Beverly, MA : Quarry Books, 2018
If you’d like a break from composing poetry (as if!), how about composing a collage? This colourful book is very easy on the eye and guides you through various simple techniques and principles for an alternative way of relaxing with paper. Aside from the basic cut and stick method, there’s stencilling, embroidery, monoprinting, stamping and of course working with type and text.
The Anthology of Poems by Drunk Women / Lisa Jeschke
London : Materials, 2018
This book comes flying at you in tipsy typefaces from three or more angles: from a stall in a public toilet, from dilemmas of Brexit to whether to marry Donald Trump, from feminist affirmation to Caster Semenya fandom, from Goethe to anti-gender warriors. It's not an anthology and the poet Lisa Jeschke may have been drunk, even very drunk, when she wrote it. The Anthology of Poems by Drunk Women was part of our Open Day display this year which indicates just how highly we rate it.