Thursday 17 June 2010

Vive la Différance!

The new Poetry London (Summer 2010) carries, as its final piece, Tim Dooley's full A4-page review of Infinite Difference with the splendid title "Vive la Différance". It has some quibbles about choice of poets/categorization (as with all anthology reviews), the academicism of some of the poetics statements (saw it coming), and the proportion of the parts of entries (strange as the poetics statements are up to one page, the entries up to eight, the biographies no more than 150 words), but the tone manifests interest in appreciation throughout.

On poetics statements Dooley speaks well of Claire Crowther and Marianne Morris; of poems he enthuses about Denise Riley, Elisabeth Bletsoe, and Morris (all the better for TLS's ignorant slighting of her). These are meant as a representative sample, the review suggests, not as the only occurrences.

If I've delayed in commenting on this review, it's in part because I've been drowning in year-end marking, in larger part because of the graciousness of the final sentence, which makes me feel all the hours were worthwhile but also makes me feel (abashed?). It may be one of the best things anyone's said about me. I dearly hope Dooley's right--I aspire to it.

"Carrie Etter has performed a service for the wider readership of poetry in bringing together these distinctive voices."

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