Vox et Praeterea Nihil – New Poetry from A C Evans
Plutarch’s description of the nightingale (‘A voice and nothing more’) is a salutary reminder of the ephemeral nature of our poetic endeavours. For what are poets – those nightingales of ‘culture’ – but a diversity of voices? Some are shrill, others are gruff, many bombastic, most mawkish, self-important or pseudo-sophisticated, a few, a very few – those crying in the wilderness – strike a chord. Yes, we are all voices and nothing more – with particular emphasis on the word ‘nothing’.
Undeterred by such thoughts, or by the hyper-intellectual theories of academic literateurs living (like several respondents to The Argotist interview and essay) in a state of denial that is really a kind of hubris or confusion or both – a number of new poems have recently slipped out from under my door. Some, thanks to the generosity of several editors, have actually found their way into print and/or online. Last April, under the Dada-style title ‘Bom chucka wah wah’, Stride published six poems from a new sequence, South of Suburbia, an excursion into tabloid impressionism. In June 2008 a group of poems together with two collages by way of illustration (‘Displacement Effects’ and ‘This Is Not The New World Order’) were included on a feature page on the new Inclement site. Aside from South of Suburbia, there are three other new sequences called The Silver Ghost, Radical Chicanery and Perfect Storm.
Various poems have appeared in the SF anthology Old Rossum’s Book of Practical Robots (2008) and Handshake 75, while magazines, Harlequin, Inclement Poetry for the Modern Soul, The Penniless Press, Pulsar and Fire also included a number of items mainly, but not exclusively, from these new sequences. Awen from Atlantean Publishing carried three translations from the French (Breton, Verlaine, Maeterlinck) while ‘Boo Galaxy’, published in Handshake, was even short-listed for the Data Dump Award 09.
Thinking about surfacing?
Illustration: Displacement Effects, 2002