Thursday, April 26, 2007

National Poetry Month Recommendation: Christian Hawkey

Here's another recommendation from Jacob, who wrote about Zbigniew Herbert earlier this month—and is the man who can do this.

The Book of Funnels
Christian Hawkey

"Mein Gott, nothing can be said less of The Book of Funnels than it set in me a new and profound hope in the future of contemporary poetry. Within you will find nothing of posturing, overwrought mechanics, or worse still, poems that turn a blind eye to language & metaphor which has been the bailiwick of contemporary poetry to date. Here, instead, is the work of a young poet that goes unabashedly & playfully into his phonetics & semantics to come out with a shining vicissitude."

Here are the opening lines of a poem called "Goya's Grotesquerie":

I don't know the story of his last days
but they ended, as always, in walls,

& what are "they" but so many palms
lining the dictator's long drive—

he's in the Yellow Room
smoothing his glass moustache,

he's sipping Lapsang souchong
& feeding a piece of cuttlebone

to a caged nightingale—tired bird.

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