The third instalment of a recent bounty from the Silhouette Press catalogue and this time it is author Jonathan Pinnock, who is best known to me as the guy who did strange things to Jane Austen. Sacrilege? Never! This writer has completed the "level 4 compliance" within the "Poetry Society Guidelines" that include restrictions on rhyming, poems about cats and is more than ready to challenge all styles and rip them up, especially the ones on swearing cause he "can't remember which fucking ones". Fair enough I say.
Poetry like this pops and bursts with fun. We often forget the pleasure of the anarchic bard, to be silly and absurd. Jonathon has not forgotten this. Pants Outside Trousers, Big Letter H On T Shirt, Here To Save the World mocks lyrical, swiping hard at the wordy ones, when a limericist, a free versifier and a composer of sestinas meets Haiku Man, this poetry festival starts to get interesting. There are poems about when apes write about love instead of bananas and how heaven turned out to be, well, "a bit shit".
Then there is the Love, swoon, be still and all that. No piece could be more reflective than A Short History Of The Cold War. Such beauty of metaphor, drawn lines and peace talks. There is a love-nest of amour on offer, many poems pondering the bitter sweet stuff. A lothario amid the drama of Bloody Italians is a perfect stage for the best decisions to be made. The Cooper Clarke beat of Dissonant Love Song #2, its words are bright and blistering. His love poems just get gloriously more twisted, A Lover's Alphabet a vent of torture and revenge that ends way before it should.
Jonathan's poetry tightens into beatific memories, on loss, dreams of Spain, a death of a mother, eye to eye with an angry bull, they are all thoroughly enjoyable. The scenarios eclectic and smart. There dwells a curious seriousness, puzzles turn into prose and the reader will benefit from two or three dips over them so their essence lights their mind globe. His experimentation with word shapes, poem on paper cuts and losing his mojo are a delight. I'll be calling Dial-A-Bard to make sure this poet knows just how much I enjoyed the experience.
From absurd situations and locations to cynical verbal sparkles, there’s an inevitable physiological tension growing as the readers goes on with his reading. This effect is reinforced by the fact that the first sparkles come from the first poem (a meta piece), quite unannounced as such.