Monday, 11 June 2012

Alasdair Paterson's Brumaire and Later, first selection

It's been out for a while, but only last week did I obtain Alasdair Paterson's pamphlet, Brumaire and Later. The poems are wonderfully precise and taut. Alasdair has given me permission to post here two poems from the pamphlet, one from each section; it helps to be familiar with the context, available on the publisher's website here (so go read the second paragraph on that page and come back).


Today we'll be looking through
what's called the revolutionary window.
Each time it opens and shuts
the view is bound to change.

Change is brought to you today
in the name of these laden country folk
who've groped their way to market.
We'll explain it to them later.

Meantime we recommend the celery,
free from the earth, its prison;
so elegant, so palely bred by now
you'd think it wouldn't snap.

It snaps; and pricks your eyes
with an extract of summers
strong-armed from you, the lives
your children should have had.

And with the antidote it carries:
a fizzy virtue of fresh beginnings.
Beginnings waiting for us all,
both sides of the revolutionary window.

Alasdair Paterson
Brumaire and Later (Flarestack Poets, 2010)

You can buy a copy of Brumaire and Later directly from the publisher for a mere £5.50 including postage.

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