Thursday, 11 January 2018

Martin Stannard on Trevor Joyce

I really enjoyed reading this review of Trevor Joyce's Selected Poems by Martin Stannard, over at the always readable Litter. It says all sorts of interesting things about mainstream poetry, non-mainstream poetry, and what Stannard wants to find in poetry. As always, plenty to agree and disagree with, but isn't that what a review should do?


The Editors said...

Hi Matt,

Yes, Martin Stannard's reviews are always worth looking at, even if I don't always agree with them (his poetry's excellent too). And although I'm at odds with him on this matter (the decision not to talk about TJ's connection to Irish poetic tradition, for eg, is a shame, as his translations of old Irish lyrics are exceptional: the fact none of his pieces appeared in 'The Finest Music' is to that anthology's detriment), the broader points it makes are really worthwhile. Poetry should excite us, should alter our perceptions for the better, and when it doesn't, what's the best way to respond? I think too many reviewers skirt around the issue of enjoyment, which should be the first point of call, right?

Simon @ G&P

Matt Merritt said...

Yes, I agree entirely, Simon. The other thing is that, for all that Martin Stannard says, it made me want to read more of Joyce's work. That said, I also need to read more from Martin Stannard – I've got bits and bobs from over the years and have always enjoyed his work.