Thursday, 10 June 2010



Despite the denials of official organs, Wales participated in the great blossoming of poetic culture of those decades between the end of the primary Cold War and the dawn of the New Right, and this unofficial English literary magazine is offering a large-scale celebration of the achievements of Welsh poets whose optimism captured them. The fall of monoliths spills daylight onto the missing half of the picture. The most interesting anglophone Welsh literature of the past century has been in the innovative vein.

A mixture of poetry, essays, memoirs, and interviews recreates a literary era in depth.

Poets featured are: John James, David Barnett, Paul Evans, Iain Sinclair, Zoƫ Skoulding, Ralph Hawkins, Peter Finch, David Greenslade, John Goodby, Nic Laight, Nick Macias, Niall Quinn, Philip Jenkins, Graham Hartill, Lynette Roberts, Chris Ozzard, Rhys Trimble, John Powell Ward. We touch on the history of innovative writing in Welsh and even turn up two avant garde texts in Welsh. An analytical essay (drawing on work only available in Welsh) uncovers the use of Welsh patterns of consonantal echoing in the English experimental tradition. An ample poetry anthology includes mainly unpublished poetry but also recovers texts from as far back as the seventies, defying forgetfulness.

Living witnesses told us strange tales. Recovery of original texts from archives and deposits has brought a disintegration of the intellectual legacy. Salvaged from among the debris of Christian, nationalist, and communalist ideologies, we shake clear a brilliant line of liberated and imaginative writing. Set up in order to fill a gap, the project has uncovered a whole gulf, a submerged realm of sophisticated intellectual exploration. Awed, we recover the traces of the classic Welsh magazine 2nd Aeon between 1966 and 1975. That is truly why each aeon is free after the first one.

£7. 170 pp. publication date 4 June 2010. available from: 21 Querneby Road, Nottingham, NG3 5JA. cheques payable to 'Andrew Duncan' please.

edited by Goodby and Duncan.

This is a follow-up to the celebrated 'Colonies of Belief', the special issue on the Irish avant-garde, edited by Scully and Goodby.

so much of this movement

is really human

the gentlemen of the

orchestra beckon us on

a blood stain

appears on my left eye

we follow a sinewy pavan

slowly and

lacking arms we will allow ourselves

to fall over the edge

of the known world

(Philip Jenkins, 'La Patinoire')

Wednesday, 9 June 2010


      after Basho

An old puddle, shallow;

a frog flops off its spot. Yay.



Chizzit : an inhabitant of Leicester, as in 'how much izzit? Reputed to be a coinage  of the shopkeepers of Skegness.  This is one of a number of versions of the famous Basho haiku I've done on my decidedly unvenomous views of my adopted hometown.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Gigging all Over the World

There's an evangelical church near me: it gets more or less a full house every service. People come from across the country to attend it. Its hymns are God-awful, pun intended, Christian Rock disasters (it's an index of the mental ruin the place induces that the performers are often quite capable musicians) its liturgy a shambling street-corner mugging of language, its sermons an unrefined form of moral bullying interspersed with lame gags, its populism a front that disguises a deeply right-wing agenda.

Reminds me of some peformance poetry venues I've been to.