Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Simon Armitage Is Not Wrong

Just finished reading Simon Armitage's latest collection, Tyrannosaurus Rex Versus the Corduroy Kid, published in Canada by House of Anansi. The book isn't uniformly brilliant--Armitage is something of a "professional poet" and some of the poems feel more well-turned than inspired--but the best poems in here are Armitage at his best, which is a furlong ahead of most poets writing in English today, making the book well worth reading. It's great to see Anansi, with the financial backing of Scott Griffin (a far better use of his money than his eponymous prize) and the editorial direction of Ken Babstock, taking the lead in publishing foreign English-language poets, starting with the anthology New British Poetry, followed up by Robin Robertson's Swithering and now Armitage. Can't wait to see what they'll publish in years to come.

Hear Armitage read three of his poems. (There's also audio on his website, linked above.)

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