Eyewear has been featuring poets here since 2005, almost since the blog began. The poets eligible for inclusion have been, well - everyone. I've featured famous poets, lesser-known, emerging, young, old, new, and, of course, mid-career, poets. Poets working across a broad digital age spectrum (fusion/hybrid?) - from performance, to lyric, to more experimental. Poets from all over the world, from many different countries. The only thing was that they had to work with the English-language poetic tradition - which, as an internationalist - I believe constitutes one greater poetic nation - and be alive and resident on planet Earth. Perhaps that's why my second anthology was called Poetry Nation.
I am very pleased to welcome Dr. Abi Curtis as the 160th poet to be featured at the site. Curtis (pictured above) lectures in creative writing at The University of Sussex, Brighton, where she also completed a PhD on psychoanalysis and literature in 2007. She writes poetry and fiction. She received an Eric Gregory Award in 2004, and was one of the winners of Salt's Crashaw Prize in 2008. Her recent book, Unexpected Weather, is currently being read for future review here at Eyewear. The very fine poem below is from that book.
I am a stranger in town gathering with a crowd
in the lecture hall. The benches give and creak
like bones. A smell of smoke, cologne and clay.
He takes the stage with a Bunsen-burner
and draws from it the tallest flame, brimming
blue, flecked with greens and browns
like the inside of an eye. I watch.
A flame is a tulip; it bows and whispers.
Tyndall speaks to us and lets us wonder.
He’ll show the nervousness of flames:
Their sensitivities and starts and foibles.
A flame is a person; a friend, your family.
A flame is a lip. A bud. My nightmare.
I watch. A woman in the front row knits.
Fire catches in her irises like knots.
He’ll demonstrate enigmatic resonance
to each of us. To all. The blaze roars
like a human enraged.
Tyndall sings his fire-tune.
It prisms, flourishes and turns.
It looks to be in pain and trying
to escape. I don’t feel well or right.
A flame is a picture. An orange-rind.
A flame is a quick thought of red.
A flame is a tear of lace. The cliff-edge.
He laughs, face altered as a broken egg.
Fire pulses in exact time to the beat of a watch.
Each click and shift from the audience
hurts my skin. Something runs over my body
as if a man could turn tuning-fork.
Rare as a letter.
Sore as flame over droplets of water.
Don’t make a sound.
But he leaves the room and whistles
from a closed apartment three stories away
and the flame twists on its plinth.
A flame is deep pain in the faces around me.
I shall jig over the rooftops until I’m out of air.
To think: I only came in here to escape the rain.
poem by Abi Curtis
TRUMP IS PART OF A HISTORY OF WHITE MALE RAGE Like a crazed killer clown, whether we are thrilled, horrified, shocked, or angered (or al...
Announcing the Shortlist for the 2016 Sexton Prize September 13, 2016 / By Kelly Davio Eyewear Publishing i...
I WILL VOTE FOR TRUMP, DAMMIT According to the latest CBS, ABC, etc, polls, Clinton is still likely to beat Trump - by percentile ...
The Beverly Prize (named after an Irish-Canadian writer and book-lover) may be unique in the publishing world (you tell me) in that it is l...
MS CLAKE IS DOING A PHD WITH LUKE KENNARD AT BIRMINGHAM UNIVERSITY, ON THE FEMINIST ABSURD IN AMERICAN AND BRITISH POETRY JENNA CLAKE I...
WHAT HELL IS THIS, SO BRIGHT AND RICH AND EMPTY? UPDATED AND REVISED Eyewear, The Blog , usually enjoys compiling end of the year...
BE PROUD 2016 is shaping up to be one of the worst years, at least from a Western historical perspective, since 1936. The deaths of ma...
INTRODUCTION TO THE FORTHCOMING COLLECTED POEMS OF TERENCE TILLER FROM EYEWEAR - ON THE POET'S CENTENARYTERENCE TILLER’S LOVELY SHAPES OF RHETORIC : AN INTRODUCTION TO HIS COLLECTED POEMS Terence Tiller died in 1987, in December; 2...
THIS MAN WAS A PREMATURE BREXITEER Britain - long admired as the home of parliamentary democracy, has a history of great struggle with ...
Mark Ford - world-renowned poet (Faber), editor ( Ashbery ), critic, and professor (UCL), has been reading a stellar group of poets, and w...