Friday, December 09, 2011

fair trade

anna and i were supposed to go to sf tonight and see death cab for cutie in concert but we are both nursing colds -- damn things are lingering on for so long they are beginning to feel like permanent conditions -- and were too pooped to make the drive, stand in line, and endure the crowds. we've seen the band twice before so it ain't like we are missing out on a once in a lifetime opportunity.

well then there was work to get thru. which i did. feeling like the morti viventi i arrived home like i was on the set of romero's night of the living dead [1968]. just as well but then i found a small package waiting for me. it was a book by ozzie poet pete spence, perrier fever [grand parade poets, 2011]. i've been digging the groove laid down by spence for several months now. i think he might be better known here in the u.s. as a visual poet. spence is a wonderfully exuberent -- if i may say it this way -- alt-lyric poet. i feel a spiritual kinship with the writer as we are both lower-case kind of dudes and write -- if i may be so bold -- in a pretty concrete manner. i don't want to get too carried away because spence is spence and i am some one who is a different person.

but anyway, i think spence is an awesome writer and his work simply makes me glad to be alive. here's a small taste from the book.


i thought the shop
was called SLIDE
until i walked into the door!

you can hear a touch of berrigan in this tercet as well as oz's own john forbes. however, spence has a visual quality that i think makes his poetry cinematic. spence is also deeply indebted to the l=a=n=g=u=a=g=e poets too which makes him even more appealing as an example of a writer who married nyc school, avant and post-avant writing into his own inimitable australian ear.

okay, enough of that. i have to thank kris hemensley for sending the book from his own poetry only bookshop in melbourne COLLECTED WORKS. i offered to trade a couple of my chapbooks in exchange for the spence which kris obliged by sending it along. i fear it's not a fair trade. even so, i'm happy as a tick buried in the thigh of a fat dog to get the poems of pete spence between two covers. thank you, kris.



At 7:01 PM, Blogger Jim K. said...

i like the mix of the straight
delivery and the snapped inference
in the same lines

i think all but the biggest
are quite happy to have a
psyched reader

i'm trying to talk a poet
i'm a big fan of into pub'ing..
hope to have something more than a
cherished stapled pile someday..

At 9:28 PM, Blogger richard lopez said...

i hear ya jim. tho i suppose even the biggies of the big would be stoked to have excited readers. after all, why all this poetry if no one is going to read it? i'm nuts for the stuff as a reader and writer of it. as you make reference, i'm not the only one to be so stoked by poetry. i hope you can get your favorite poet to publish a book or start a blog. why not.


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