Literary reviews by Tim Love.
Warning: Rather than reviews, these are often notes in preparation for reviews that were never finished, or pleas for help with understanding pieces. See Litref Reviews - a rationale for details.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

"Racing the Stable Clock" by Frank Wood (HappenStance, 2012)

On a second reading, I think I paced myself more appropriately, finding poems that are pleasant, or wry, or are thoughtful anecdotes, as well as a few poems that are quirky. I like "Gravestones", "The rain" (serves WCW right) and the final poem, "Reflection", which is about someone in a room seeing himself in the night window. It ends with

I envy him his serenity and complacence
and wonder what he's saying with his pen
but he turns off his lamp and disappears

But when wry or anecdotal poems don't quite work, they can sound rather sedate. "Letter from Lesbos" is a letter (prose rather than poetry). It contains a decent enough idea that is competently albeit unsurprizingly executed. Likewise with "I, Sardine" and "A day in the life of an objective correlative". "Up from the provinces" is prose. The poems on pages 7, 8, 16, 19, 23, 24, 26 and 31 seem on the flat side to me.

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