Saturday, July 24, 2010
I also hadn't realised that Andrew Duncan now has a blog - using it to continue his Angel Exhaust musings - full of articles and reviews written with his usual panache. Click here.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
I hope Salt survives, but I believe that the corporate model they’ve adopted doesn't work for poetry; accountants don't like it, which is why OUP jettisoned its poetry list. The publishing of contemporary poetry is not viable without subsidy, whether it be public or private. As a business, you produce products that people want (or can be persuaded to want) or you go bust; you need products that sell in bulk, and since the end of the UK’s Net Book Agreement (whereby book prices were fixed, enabling publishers to subsidize work that sold in small quantities), there’s been no place for poetry (and much else) in commercial publishing. How long would Bloodaxe and Carcanet survive if their public funding was removed? Not long.
As our millionaire rulers roll back public spending and the Big Society has us all working longer hours for less pay and fewer rights, Salt won't be the only poetry publisher to suffer. Maybe the only publishers left will be self-funded micro-publishers. In the UK brewing industry craft-beer is now almost exclusively produced by micro breweries. In a sense, that means the big boys have won, but at least you CAN still buy craft-brewed beer. The same might happen in the poetry world. We can only hope that the micro-publishers keep poetry-publishing alive until (if?) times get better.
Monday, July 19, 2010
I suppose Eigner's disability provided a constraining mechanism in the same way that a strict poetic form does; the sparseness of his text necessitated by the slow and painstaking way in which they were put onto paper. It’s interesting that in one sense Eigner’s work is very-modern(ist), in another his poems are tied to their mode of production, in which the typed and scrawled page is as much part of the work as the scroll in a classical Chinese picture-poem.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Ed Baker - Stone Girl (a 500-page poem)
Ernesto Priego - The Present Day
Tom Beckett - Exposures
Add to this a new book from Jean Vengua and Alistair Noon's translation of Mandelstam; not to mention our very own John BR...
This is a lot of work for two part-time enthusiasts, so this list will take us well into 2011.