The Page
poetry, essays, ideas
"Fittingly, his posthumous book from The Aeneid may come to be recognised as his finest translation of all, as well as the one most personal to him." Bernard O'Donoghue • Irish Times
"I thought I would be able to clearly see the move between Roggenbuck the ironic, post-internet troll in his accounts of his experiments with YikYak – and Roggenbuck the Poet, aping after a Poetry or Poetic Moment in his love poems. But I really couldn’t – and not, because Roggenbuck has rehearsed himself in front of a mirror until the whole thing is so consistent that we can’t tell, but because he is only concerned with saying and doing things that he 100% believes in at that moment. What this means for someone that high kicks between poems though I’m not sure." Lucy Burns • Manchester Review
"Whittock’s paradoxical visibility, then, is a product of the internet, as poet obscurity is now most easily achieved by refusing an online presence. For non-refuseniks, what’s interesting is likely to circulate: especially, in this case, when the writing is a completely unexpected, wittily fused celebration and critique of Australia’s other national sport." Michael Farrell • Sydney Review of Books
"Blaser recalls: "When Duncan was here at Simon Fraser for a reading he said, 'I've given nothing up for poetry.' This is in contrast -- you heard that, Warren -- to the cost for people like Jack." Tallman responds: "Well, Duncan once said, 'I would kick poetry in the teeth.'" And Blaser retorts: "Yes, 'I would kick poetry in the teeth rather than have it cost me.'" Well worth noting is that, in both instances, Duncan is never referred to as "Robert" while Spicer is always referred to as "Jack."" Patrick James Dunagan Bookslut
"[Heather] Phillipson likens writing poetry to editing her art videos or creating her installations; in each, she uses the technique of montage — or ‘‘ramming objects, images, words, sounds together’’ — that is now her absurdist trademark. Her videos’ unlikely layers — a ’60s girl-group soundtrack with the image of a loaf of bread on top of a disquisition on Abstract Expressionism, for instance — create what she calls a ‘‘gap’’ in the viewer’s understanding. ‘‘And something has to come in to fill that gap,’’ she continued: ‘‘the imagination.’’ Indeed, Phillipson’s work can seem a kind of aesthetic shock treatment for the viewer’s own creativity." Ben Eastham NYT
"One of my favourite moments in the [Jeremy Noel-Tod] pamphlet arrives with a provocative comparison between Marianne Dashwood’s passion for William Cowper in Sense and Sensibility (a marker of passé or gauche taste even in Austen’s time) and our current mania for Seamus Heaney." Dai George • Poetry Wales
"Misreading a minor, early work, from an oeuvre as substantial, as varied and as uneven as Hughes’s – plays, stories, children’s books and volumes of critical essays and translations as well as poetry, not to speak of the hinterland of unpublished writings – could be called a minor lapse in a biographer. But Bate has other readings just as bizarre, and cumulatively they suggest a careless approach to his subject’s work – even though “The biographical impulse must be at one with the literary-critical”, his Prologue reminds us. And, as with the detail, so with the central contention of his book." Alan Jenkins • TLS
"Here, revised, chopped up and interspersed with other subjects, “Hold Still, Lion!” allows readers to approach Creeley as Wright does, repeatedly, glancingly, as she lives and thinks of other things. “When I wrote to poet Rosmarie Waldrop (who was out of the country at the time), regarding Robert Creeley’s death, she responded, ‘It is the end of a world.’ ” Then white space for the rest of the page, so that reading Wright on Waldrop on Creeley, imagining long-distance shared loss between poets, becomes something like coming across an epitaph in a graveyard that arrests you with a sudden perception of death in life. Then you go on." Daisy Fried • NYT
"Using the Gospel story in which Christ draws a line in the sand with his finger to prevent a crowd from stoning an adulterous woman, Heaney says that writing can change things. Over time, occasionally, I have felt a need to speak as a gay man, since until recently we were not encouraged by society to love one another, marry, and have children. So if I have an ethics, it is simply to be true, but never at the expense of original language." Henri Cole • Paris Review
"The thing I respect most about the best contemporary Australian poetry is its bravery, its successes in spite of a lack of reach and marketability. The best Australian poetry has melody as well as melodrama, a tradition of a language caught in multicultural maelstrom, a poetry that dares to just go on its nerve." Rob Wilson • Cordite
"On one occasion when Goh feels that he has been snubbed by the great man in the Coffee Inn, Goh spends an hour "devising devilish ways for his [Patrick Kavanagh's] demise," only for Kavanagh to return, place a hand on Goh's shoulder and say, "Sorry, me lad. I was grappling with the muse, you see." Goh later tells Kavanagh he wants to be a writer, only for Kavanagh to quote, "Child, do not go / Into the dark places of the soul."" Michael O'Sullivan • Cha
"The border between memory and present is always pervious. Many of [Ni Chuilleanain's] poems hover nostalgically over the past and withdraw just at the point of sentiment. Often to the fore is the sense of guidance by a personal reading life into external fact, one prompting the other, in much the way Schliemann was guided by the tick of literature in the ruins of Mycenae. All this mention of excavation comes directly from the poet herself, where readers learn in 'Youth' that "all I have done combines to excavate / a channelled maze where I am escaping home"." Dean Browne • Southword
"Palestine, such as it is—the occupied territories and the Palestinian people (including, importantly, the Palestinian diaspora)—composes a rootless body that defies clear definition, a body which is abundant, which exceeds borders, but which is not confused." Adam Day on Najwan Darwish • Kenyon Review
"It’s interesting – after all the study I did and all the reading I’ve done about psychoanalysis – the great presentation of psychoanalysis is still ‘In Memory of Sigmund Freud’, which is one of the incredible poems of the twentieth century. There are still people who will say “Freud was right, Freud was wrong…” – it doesn’t make any difference. He made these discoveries about consciousness, not all of them were right but many of them in their basic configurations are undeniable." CK Williams • The Poetry Review
"When Danielle, an American visitor to Belfast, stumbles upon a mysterious handwritten note in a 2nd hand copy of Ciaran Carson's novel The Star Factory - she finds herself on a labyrinthine journey through his prose and through the hidden side-roads and alleyways of the city." Conor Garrett • BBC
"To approximate Latin hexameters, or even to render Virgil’s words in English as accurately as possible, seems to me as unnecessary (and indeed unwanted) as installing Roman plumbing in my house." David Hadbawnik • Like Starlings
"Simić invites chance into his poems, but does not give it carte blanche. He is more like André Breton who, caught revising his automatic writing, shrugged and claimed, “It wasn’t automatic enough.” Simić submits to chance “only to cheat on it.” The resulting poetry is a close cousin to the works of the visual artists to whom Simić is drawn: Giorgio de Chirico, Eva Hesse, Joseph Cornell, and Odilon Redon." Robert Archambeau • Boston Review
"It was a sad day for poetry when Ezra Pound discovered Confucius." Eric Ormsby • New Criterion
"What makes [Christopher] Middleton very different from these, however, is that he simultaneously became increasingly modernist and experimental, like a plant that reaches up towards light and delves into the earth for the different kinds of sustenance it needs. In this, he is similar to Davie and Gunn, who began to take a sympathetic interest in Modernism in the 1960s." Henry King • Eborakon
"But this is no ordinary vagrant. As the monologue proceeds he cites Jesus, Marx, and Jung, uses occasional expressions in French and fears for the preservation of his “spiritual integrity”. It is an intellectual discourse on self and society which maintains a sense of poetical writing in a constant rhythmic poise with quite strong figuration and alliteration when it gets excited." Peter Riley on David Gascoyne • Fortnightly Review
"‘The main thing is to be useful,’ ­Amichai would often say'." Rosie Schaap • New York Times
"The narrative in which a person is irrevocably marked by a single event is characteristic of our popular culture (just look at all those superhero movies). It co-exists oddly with the idea that the individual is both free and free to change. Meanwhile, “I know I know too much” might be the mantra of the postmodern subject, who must simultaneously live within this post-Freudian narrative and constantly ironize it." Ailbhe Darcy • Critical Flame
"The poet we encounter in Beauty/Beauty is someone who knows when to listen (“Last Sunday he said: / to be of use ought to be / the aim of our lives”) and when to balk (“World as I am surrounded by the idiocy of men”)." Evan Jones • Guardian "Although Perry’s collection marks the accomplishment of her own voice and style, a poem like the Casida of the Dead Sun points to her readiness for wider challenges, including a fruitful exchange with other writers and languages." Carol Rumens • Guardian
"In addition to creative work, we also sought pragmatic responses on how to ethically engage contexts, like the MFA workshop, as sites of cultural and perceptual invention. As a teacher of creative writing, I may be teaching a craft, however, I am also teaching, through my conversation and language, the ethics of my craft. Thus, we sought honest and informed responses to aid in potential conflict situations that may arise in classroom critiques: how to engage offensive or cliché racial characterizations, offensive or cliché gender representation, sexist or homophobic imagery, etc." J. Michael Martinez & Khadijah Queen • Evening Will Come
"The key to Goethe is that the spiritual “healthiness” so disliked by [TS] Eliot was not that of a man with a perfect constitution but that of a recovered invalid. He knew the “weakness” that Arnold described all too well. Goethe’s early life was a privileged one—he was the only surviving son of a prosperous bourgeois family in Frankfurt—and as a young man he teetered on the brink of waywardness. Though he studied law, at his father’s insistence, and even practiced briefly, the occupation was never more than a cover for what really interested him, which was writing poetry and falling in love." Adam Kirsch • New Yorker

New poems

Peter Sirr Irish Examiner

Katie Manning Queen Mob's Teahouse

Gail Mazur Hudson Review

Ian Pople Poetry Ireland Review

Jo Shapcott Southword

Dean Browne Southword

Maja Haderlap, tr Tess Lewis Words Without Borders

Jannine Horsford Manchester Review

Galina Rymbu Music and Literature

Conceição Lima, tr. David Shook World Literature Today

Michael Longley Poetry London

Ange Mlinko Poetry

Xiao Kaiyu Asymptote

CD Wright Poetry


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The Page is edited by John McAuliffe, Vincenz Serrano and, since September 2013, Evan Jones at the Centre for New Writing at the University of Manchester. It was founded in October 2004 by Andrew Johnston, who edited it until October 2009.
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