Poetry New Zealand Yearbook: 2017
As reviewed in our April Newsletter
A journalist recently wrote that the very idea of poetry is seen as somewhat unmanly – it's all about feelings… the ultimate purple prose! Wrong. It's not prose at all, and that's the point. Also, what does that say about the Poetry New ZealandYearbook here, where almost half of the many contributors are male?
It may also be that poetry mainly sells only to other poets – in which case the inclusion of so many in this edition is probably a good idea.
Edited by Jack Ross, the selection favours new and emerging writers. This is brave and generous because the reader is left to decide for themselves what is worthwhile.
Having repeatedly dipped into the contents, I found myself thinking it was all a bit 'top heavy'. I mean, it's all very good but it is rather literary. There are some truly weird and wonderful lines here but the whole thing would have a wider appeal if there were some slam, some Banksy style equivalent of the message.
Poetry is capable of this but the first thing to get right is to get a wider audience to actually read it.
This selection is definitely worth owning, everything here has merit. It is a collection worth dipping into when you are looking for inspiration. Mike
TERRIFIC NEW NEW ZEALAND POETRYPoetry New Zealand, this country's longest-running poetry magazine, showcases new writing from New Zealand and overseas. It presents the work of talented newcomers as well as that of established voices.Issue #51 features 128 new poems, including work by featured poet Elizabeth Morton, Riemke Ensing, Mohamed Hassan, Anna Jackson, Michele Leggott, Kiri Piahana-Wong and Elizabeth Smither, as well as essays by Janet Charman, Lisa Samuels and Bryan Walpert, and reviews of 33 new poetry collections.