The Page
poetry, essays, ideas
"These reviews have a tough tone but a generous outlook, and one of the virtues of reading decades of reviews collected in this manner is that we have the chance to see that [Mary] Dalton does not always review "the usual suspects," but rather, a swath of Canadian poets who have been working hard for years often without accolades or awards. The result is a critical constellation by which outline we can read Dalton as a cultural commentator on national literature, and is the kind of literary constellation that every reviewer should aspire to creating with their own critical oeuvre." Tanis MacDonald Malahat Review
"I’ve hardly yet begun to talk about the intersections I know are possible between prose and poetry, the great interest I—and so many others—have in hybridity." Camille Dungy Triquarterly
"Culture is less a series of peaceable, adjacent neighbourhoods, each inhabited by different art forms, than a jungle in which various animals claim whatever territory is there for the taking. It’s possible that poets can trail along foxlike behind the massive tiger of popular music, occasionally plucking a few choice hairs from its coat both to demonstrate their superiority and to make themselves look a bit tigerish. With Dylan’s Nobel, we saw what happens when the big cat turns around." David Orr NYT
"Chuck Berry’s forceful and witty lyrics are not great poetry in any dimension, but they are hugely memorable, and known to millions by heart because of the way they are embedded in the music, and that music is embedded in our memories and lives. If even 100,000 people could quote Walcott by heart today, that would be surprising." Guardian
"Derek Walcott offered students a dangerous place to write, and he taught them to find many voices, especially voices of the past. He was not in the business of signing permission slips. His partner, Sigrid Nama, who is the quintessence of tact and warmth, told me early on that “Derek can’t schmooze, can’t lie, and has no small talk.”" Bert Almon • The Walrus
"It could be said that Feinstein is the curious child loving blossom and mosses, still eager in her disguise as the “girl / with wet feet and muddy skirt”, hurrying in her new poem Delusions of the Retina to “welcome another year into my garden”." Martina Evans Irish Times
"Doig couldn’t have asked for a more daunting appraiser than the eighty-seven-year-old Nobel laureate. No one has scrutinized the Caribbean with more devotion, sensitivity, and protectiveness than Walcott, a St. Lucian poet, playwright, and painter who has made its landscape the touchstone of his art. He flew to Montreal in 2014 for Doig’s exhibition “No Foreign Lands,” urged by the French editor Harry Jancovici, who after reading Walcott on Caribbean painting proposed a joint project. It began with the artist steering Walcott through the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, watching from behind his wheelchair as he evaluated each painting, inaugurating the series of exchanges that would become Morning, Paramin." Julian Lucas NYRB
"The house governs the poetics of space (inflected by time – and eventually Riemann’s geometry provides a model for Einstein’s space-time); the road and river govern a poetics of time (inflected by space – for we must all go home again, whether we can or can’t, in fact or in imagination, sooner or later). And what child does not thrill to the romance of departure, which is after all what eventually he or she prepares to do." Emily Grosholz PN Review
"At the same time, some people really want poems — specifically poems written in the first person — to be about someone and something “real,” and they can feel cheated when the poem isn’t. There needs to be a different way of talking about it aside from “autobiography.” I’m interested in how Sharon Olds has spoken about her work as being “apparently personal.” The things of her poems do seem like her “real life,” but she didn’t used to own up to that. But even then — I say “own up” as if I’m accusing her of not admitting something." Emily Berry • LARB
"And among the many classics on [California-based website, allpoetry.com] is Patrick Kavanagh’s epic, The Great Hunger. This is a grim portrait of the Irish rural condition, circa 1942, seen through the words and thoughts of unmarried farmer Patrick Maguire. But for our purposes, the relevant extract is where Maguire – as quoted by the website, asterisks and all – says this: “Is that Cassidy’s *** out in my clover? Curse o’ God/Where is that dog?”" Frank McNally Irish Times
"“The Seaside Cemetery” is Derek Mahon’s translation (included in his collection Harbour Lights, 2005) of Valéry’s “Le Cimetière Marin”. In it he Valéry faces an objective, unresponsive world on which his thinking can make no impact, and is tempted to join those who “have long ago arrived” at death’s conclusion. But this world calls him back." Andrew McCulloch TLS
"He wanted musicality in his 1950s novels, experimental prose poetry and the self-invented free form haikus he called “American Pops”. The elegiac passages concluding On the Road (1957) and “October in the Railroad Earth” have long been celebrated for the flowing rhythmic beauty of their wordplays. But his modern jazz-inspired improvisational poetics took far longer to gain recognition, even though his friends Allen Ginsberg and Michael McClure, and the youthful Bob Dylan, were early advocates for Mexico City Blues, the latter calling it “the first poetry that spoke my own language”." Jules Smith TLS
"No-one has been more interestingly unhappy than Houellebecq." Rob Doyle Irish Times
"Watts has described being drawn to animals: “their un-self consciousness and their (in the main) indifference to me is liberating.” It seems that against the backdrop of the natural world, Watts finds the freedom to probe unsettling thoughts and emotions." Lucy Winrow • The Manchester Review
"As Marinetti wrote in the Futurist manifesto: ‘Time and Space died yesterday. We already live in the absolute.’ Libertarians, like the Futurists, loathe the past, which they associate with the natural world: the future is artificial, and they want to own it." Jay Griffiths • Aeon
"Between them, the nuthatch form a quadrangular space in the hedge and it reminds me of what Eliot called, “…the intersection of the timeless moment/ Is England and nowhere.” The gidding of nuthatch fly off across a field where redwings, too agitated about leaving to be counted, call constantly to each other with a question: When? And they complete Eliot’s line, “Never and always.”" Paul Evans Guardian


New poems

Roy Fisher The Poetry Archive

Richard Osmond Guardian

Derek Mahon Irish Times

Vincenz Serrano High Chair

Michael Hofmann New Yorker

Susan Barba Poetry

Stevie Howell Southword

Daisy Fried Threepenny Review

Rachael Allen Poetry london

Michael Symmons Roberts The Manchester Review



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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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