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It's not easy to put yourself into the tattered loafers of a contemporary poet. He isn't much read - not on this continent at least. He doesn't represent any kind of iconic allusion. He isn't quoted by politicians except on inauguration day or when they're reaching for what they hope is sublime, most likely in a speech they instinctively know will be too long. I can imagine Senator Throb screaming at his speech writers later to not give him the kind of material that causes the voters' eyes to glaze over. "It's the last goddam time we're quoting any goddam poetry." So what could possibly be said about the poets in this anthology that they might not have already lied about to their mothers? Instead I'll talk about you. I try to visualize you reading this introduction and then the entire book. I can't exactly picture you, obviously, but know you're not the average reader or you wouldn't have selected this book - while I admit the cover is attractive. You either have a thirst for knowledge or, at least, elevated diversion. You're not necessarily highly educated but you ain't no dumb ass. I love you. I want to crawl up your leg a homing finger but I'm not after your libido.It's your spine from about mid-lower back up into your brain stem that I want to straighten with the gentlest of tingling.
Your head should raise and your chin should point. And you should feel it in your ears. The poets in this book share that wish. I doubt that any one of them hopes for the sentences they've crafted to be in all senses useless. They've set out to touch something, somehow, with only words at their disposal. Words can thrill, still, in this day and age, if only for a moment. There are still moments a book can energize a latent or near forgotten purpose to our lives. Maybe that is too much to hope for with this volume, but maybe hoping for an initiative sparked by one or two of these writers leading to future moments in which that is attained, isn't.
Release date NZ
April 1st, 2006
Edited by Feargal Mooney
Country of Publication
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