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Monday, February 19, 2018

Meet the EUOIA collaborators: Steve McCaffery


With Steve McCaffery I created the Irish poems of Sean Eoghan for Twitters for a Lark: Poetry of the European Union of Imaginary Authors. You can read more about him in the book itself, which of course is where his two poems are!

On the other hand, Steve McCaffery has been twice nominated for Canada’s Governor General’s Award and is twice recipient of the American Gertrude Stein Prize for Innovative Writing. He is the author of over 40 books and chapbooks of poetry and criticism. An ample selection can be savoured in the two volumes of Seven Pages Missing (Coach House Press) as well as in Panopticon, Tatterdemalion (Veer Books), Alice in Plunderland (Book Thug), Revanches (Xexoxial), and Parsival (Roof). His book-object-concept A Little Manual of Treason was commissioned for the 2011 Shajah Biennale in the United Arab Emirates. A founding member of the sound poetry ensemble Four Horsemen, Toronto Research Group, and the College of Canadian ’Pataphysics, he is now David Gray Professor of Poetry and Letters at the University at Buffalo.​ 



Read more about the European Union of Imaginary Authors here and here

More on Twitters for a Lark here and here. See also A Translated Man ( an early account here; the book is also available from Shearsman here.)

All the collaborators are introduced at links available here.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Meet the EUOIA collaborators: Rupert Loydell

How could I not work with Rupert Loydell? Rather like S.J. Fowler he is Mr Collaboration (though I don’t think they’ve worked with each other (yet)). With Rupert, I created the Estonian poems of Hermes for Twitters for a Lark: Poetry of the European Union of Imaginary Authors. You can read more about (and see) Hermes here, and, yes, he is a bit of a dick. Twit for a lark. In fact, he’s responsible for ‘Robert Sheppard’ leaving the EU (OIA that is). See here for Rupert’s severe interview with the Beast!

Rupert Loydell is Senior Lecturer at Falmouth University, a poet and a painter. He has published many many books of poems, the most recent of which is Dear Mary (Shearsman: 2017).

Read more about the European Union of Imaginary Authors here and here.
More on Twitters for a Lark here and here. See also A Translated Man ( an early account here; the book is also available from Shearsman here.)

All the collaborators are introduced at links available here.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Meet the EUOIA collaborators: Frances Kruk

With Frances Kruk I intended to create the German poems of Karla Schaffer for Twitters for a Lark: Poetry of the European Union of Imaginary Authors. Unfortunately Frances has been ill and convalescing for most of the time the book was being assembled. We decided to leave our page blank. This means we could re-visit it. BUT it means that we’ve also offered this enormous hole at the centre of Europe, which (I suspect) is not the way Germans want to see themselves. At least in our little universe, they are stuck with it!

Frances Kruk is a Polish-Canadian poet and artist whose work has appeared in various international media. Her most recent publication is lo-fi frags in-progress (Veer Books: 2015). This is an excellent book, which I first read when  it was part of her PhD: get it.

Read more about the European Union of Imaginary Authors here and here

More on Twitters for a Lark here and here. See also A Translated Man ( an early account here; the book is also available from Shearsman here.)

Frances wrote recently to say she liked the colouful cover. So here it is again, big!


All the collaborators are introduced at links available here.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Meet the EUOIA collaborators: Tom Jenks


With Tom Jenks I created the Luxembourgish poems of Georg Bleinstein for Twitters for a Lark: Poetry of the European Union of Imaginary Authors. You can read more abouthim here. I DO implore you to check out this link because it is the monstrously long biographical note that we wrote together (in effect, the real collaboration), but I’ve embedded some surreal and wonderful videos to illustrate a life that is (literally) not over yet! It's a work of web art in its own right, according to Georg's agent, General Knaphausen.He should know; he's a puffin!

Tom Jenks books include Sublunar (Oystercatcher Press), Items (if p then q) and The Tome of Commencement (Stranger Press). He co-organises the Other Room reading series and edits the avant objects imprint zimZalla.

And he read at the Other Room EUOIA evening the other month


Read more about the European Union of Imaginary Authors here and here

More on Twitters for a Lark here and here. See also A Translated Man ( an early account here; the book is also available from Shearsman here), a book which Tom opined made me as Belgian as moule frite and Herman Von Rompuy. So true.

All the collaborators are introduced at links available here.

Another Non-Disclosure Agreement Brexit poem: with free Boneless Pork Rectum


I made a habit of posting my topical sonnets earlier last year as they were written. I write about the Earl of Surrey ones here , where I also explain that the poems were temporarily posted, partly because I was often commenting on contemporary events, like Boris' gaffes, and I wanted to get an immediate audience. See here for one reference to this last sequence, feeding off of the sonnets of Charlotte Smith, and featuring Boris' then most recent gaffe. Here's my latest. I've been hinting here that I've got another sequence of poems I wanted to detourn; this time it is EEB's exquisite 'Poems from the Portuguese'. I pondered 'Brazilian Sonnets' as a title, using some bossa nova tropes, but they just got in the way (in today's poem I imagine they are the subject's poems). I regard the title (came to me in a flash) as peculiarly apposite: I'd read that one of our leading (Tory) politicians has a Non Disclosure Agreement with one (or more?) of his lovers; the second poem is about the President's Club outrage - the girls had to sign such an agreement. This one follows up on that... In a sense Robert and EB Browning had a mutual non-disclsoure agreement during their courtship. (There's another possible scenario too: Mistress Elizabeth receives gentlemen callers in Wimpole St, who have to perform beastly acts, possibly taking on the persona of the dog Flush (see Virginia Woolf's fine biography of this hound) I activated that possibility in the last poem).


Here's today's VERY rough first draft (and scroll for a horrible image and more drafts. 21 people have accessed the poem when I hadn't got to a decent draft!!)


The Soul’s Rialto Hath its Merchandise


My little piggy, you’re off to market:
‘The fundamental unit of post-Brexit trade,’ you say,
‘will be American boneless pork rectum (inverted)!’
Low in the water container ships chug to our free ports.

Your counterpart, Pandar, ponderously opens his box,
and all Pandemonium breaks loose. He
commissions the State Bard to pen a panegyric
of panglossic optimism for Independence Day.

Alone, we exchange bodily fluids. Sex is like
peddling uphill on a Boris bike: fish-breath,
rough kisses, purple cheeks, a porky quickie…

(This polar-white pillow strand I’ll send for analysis,
a positive bonus for the rest of my life
as you cool and drift off into pre-Brexcosis…


he speaker alludes to the ancient Greek poet, Pindar, who is considered the greatest of the nine most famous ancient Greek poets, whom she references as “the nine white Muse-brows.”

the nine dead white men

The bit I didn't make up:



The Soul’s Rialto Hath its Merchandise

My little piggy, you’re off to market. You say:
‘The fundamental unit of post-Brexit trade
will be American boneless pork rectum (inverted)!’
Low in the water container ships chug to port.

Your counterpart, Pandar, ponderously opens his box:
all Pandemonium breaks loose. He
commissions the State Bard to pen a panegyric,
panglossic optimism for Independence Day.

Alone, we exchange bodily fluids. Sex is
peddling uphill on a Boris bike: fish-breath,
rough kisses, purple cheeks: a porcine quickie.

This polar-white strand I pick from the pillow,
I’ll send for analysis, a bonus for the rest of my life,
as you cool and drift off into premature Brexcosis.

16th February 2018

It's getting there:



The Soul’s Rialto Hath its Merchandise

My little piggy, you’re off to market. You say:
‘The fundamental unit of post-Brexit trade
will be American boneless pork rectum (inverted)!’
Low in the water container ships chug to port.

Your counterpart, Pandar, ponderously opens his box:
all Pandemonium breaks loose. He
commissions the State Bard to pen a panegyric,
panglossic optimism for Independence Day.

Alone, we exchange bodily fluids. Sex is
peddling uphill on a Boris bike: fish-breath,
rough kisses, purple cheeks: a porcine quickie.

This polar-white strand I pick from the pillow,
I’ll send for analysis, a bonus for the rest of my life,
as you cool and drift off into premature Brexcosis.

16th February 2018

Better:



The Soul’s Rialto hath its Merchandise

My little piggy, you’re off to free market. You say:
‘The fundamental unit of post-Brexit trade will be
American Boneless Pork Rectums (Inverted)!’
Low in the water container ships chug to port.

Your counterpart, Pandar, ponderously opens
his ministerial box: all Pandemonium breaks loose.
He commissions the State Bard to pen a panegyric,
panglossic optimism for Independence Day.

Alone, we exchange bodily fluids. Sex is
peddling uphill on a Boris bike: fish-breath,
rough kisses, purple cheeks: porcine quickie.

This polar-white strand I pick from the pillow
I’ll send for analysis, paternalistic bonus in perpetuity,
as you cool and drift into soft Brexcosis.

16th February 2018


Nearly best? Who can tell yet?



The Soul’s Rialto hath its Merchandise

My little piggy, you’re off to free market. You say:
‘The fundamental unit of post-Brexit trade will be
American Boneless Pork Rectums (Inverted)!’
Low in the water container ships chug to port.

Your counterpart, Pandar, ponderously opens
his ministerial box: all Pandemonium breaks loose.
He solicits the State Bard to pen a panegyric,
panglossic optimism for Independence Day.

Alone, we exchange bodily fluids. Sex is
peddling uphill on a Boris bike: purple cheeks,
fish-breath, rough kisses: porcine quickie.

This polar-white strand I pick from the pillow
I’ll send for analysis, paternalistic bonus in perpetuity,
as you cool and drift into soft Brexcosis.

16th February 2018

AND: 



The Soul’s Rialto hath its Merchandise

My little piggy, you’re off to free market. You say:
‘The fundamental unit of post-Brexit trade will be
American Boneless Pork Rectums (Inverted)!’
Low in the water container ships chug to port.

Your counterpart, Pandar, ponderously opens
his ministerial box: all Pandemonium breaks loose.
He solicits the State Bard to pen a panegyric,
panglossic optimism for Independence Day.

Alone, we exchange bodily fluids, bonito. Sex
peddles uphill on a Boris bike: purple cheeks,
fish-breath, rough kisses: porcine quickie.

This polar-white strand I pick from the pillow
I’ll send for analysis, paternalistic bonus in perpetuity,
as you cool and drift into soft Brexcosis.

16th February 2018





Thursday, February 15, 2018

Ern Malley evening: Liverpool 13th March


Liverpool, the birthplace of Ern Malley, probably the most famous English language fictional poet. I am taking part in a celebration of his 100th birthday on 14 March round the corner at the Handyman Pub, and I shall read ‘Robert Sheppard’’s ‘The Ern Malley Suite’ from Twitters. Believe it or not, I’ve met a composer who has set all the Malley poems to music, and these will be performed!

Meet the EUOIA Collaborators: Jeff Hilson



With Jeff Hilson I created the Hungarian poems of Josef Ratsky for Twitters for a Lark: Poetry of the European Union of Imaginary Authors. You can read more about Ratsky here.

Jeff Hilson wrote stretchers (Reality Street 2006), Bird bird (Landfill 2009) and In The Assarts (Veer 2010). He also edited The Reality Street Book of Sonnets (Reality Street 2008), which I responded to here (before writing about it in The Meaning of Form here). Two new books, Latanoprost Variations and Organ Music, are finished. He runs Xing the Line reading series in London and teaches Creative Writing at the University of Roehampton.
 


He appeared by video link (actually via tape) at the EUOIA Other Room night in Manchester in August 2017. Details here:

Read about our earlier collaboration here. Here we are laughing like drains!!!!

Read more about the European Union of Imaginary Authors here and here
More on Twitters for a Lark here and here. See also A Translated Man ( an early account here; the book is also available from Shearsman here.)



 All the collaborators are introduced at links available here.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Meet the EUOIA Collaborators: Robert Hampson

With Robert Hampson I created the Romanian poems of Mirela Nemoianu for Twitters for a Lark: Poetry of the European Union of Imaginary Authors. You can read more about Mirela  here.

Robert Hampson FEA, FRSA was Professor of Modern Literature at Royal Holloway, University of London, from 2000 to 2016. He was educated at King's College, London, and the University of Toronto.He gained his BA and PhD from King's College, London, and his MA from Toronto (which he attended as the result of the award of a Commonwealth Scholarship). He was Director of the MA in Creative Writing 2016-17. He is currently Distinguished Teaching and Research Fellow.

Robert has an international reputation as a Conrad scholar and critic. His books on Conrad include Joseph Conrad: Betrayal and Identity (Macmillan, 1992), Cross-Cultural Encounters in Joseph Conrad's Malay Fiction (Palgrave, 2000) and Conrad's Secrets (Palgrave, 2013). Cross-Cultural Encounters was described in The Year's Work in English Studies (2002) as 'the outstanding contribution to Conrad scholarship this year', while Conrad's Secrets was described, in The Year's Work in English Studies (2013), as 'arguably the most striking and inventive contribution to Conrad scholarship in 2012' and, by the Times Literary Supplement, as 'an indispensable resource for specialists and enthusiasts alike'. He has also edited various works by Conrad ('Heart of Darkness', Lord Jim and Victory) and was the editor of The Conradian (1989-96). He has recently co-edited Conrad and Language (Edinburgh, 2016) with Katherine Baxter; he has also co-edited two collections of essays on Ford Madox Ford - Ford Madox Ford: A Re Assessment (Rodopi, 2002) and Ford Madox Ford and Modernity (Rodopi, 2003) - and works by Kipling and Rider Haggard. In January 2015, he was elected Chair of the Joseph Conrad Society (UK). Conrad's Secrets was the recipient of the Adam Gillon Award from the Joseph Conrad Society of America (2015) for best book on Conrad. In 2017 the Joseph Conrad society of America awarded him the Ian P. Watt Prize for Excellence in Conrad Scholarship for his lifetime's work on Conrad.

In addition to his work on Conrad, he has had a long-term involvement with contemporary innovative poetry as editor, critic and practitioner. He co-edited the magazine Alembic during the 1970s, and he and Peter Barry co-edited the pioneering collection of essays The New British poetries: The scope of the possible (Manchester University press, 1993). He co-edited Frank O'Hara Now (Liverpool University Press, 2010) with Will Montgomery and Clasp: late modernist poetry in London in the 1970s (Shearsman, 2016) with Ken Edwards. His own most recent poetry publications include Assembled Fugitives: Selected Poems 1973-1998 (Stride, 2000), the legendary Seaport (Shearsman, 2008), an explanation of colours (Veer, 2010), and sonnets 4 sophie (pushtika, 2015). Reworked Disasters (Knivesforksand spoons, 2013) was long-listed for the Forward Prize. He collaborated (with Robert Sheppard) on Liverpool (hugs) and kisses (2015). Read that collaboration with Robert, here

Watch him read his new sonnets here. 

There is information about the FOR ROBERT anthology published on his retirement here.

Read more about the European Union of Imaginary Authors here and here

More on Twitters for a Lark here and here. See also A Translated Man ( an early account here; the book is also available from Shearsman here.)

 All the collaborators are introduced at links available here.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Meet the EUOIA Collaborators: God's Rude Wireless

With God’s Rude Wireless, I created the Dutch poems of Maarten De Zoute for Twitters for a Lark: Poetry of the European Union of Imaginary Authors, though he also features in A Translated Man via an epigraph and as a presence in the translator’s diary at the end of that collection. See also A Translated Man ( an early account here; the book is also available from Shearsman here, as are a number of my recent works.)

I wanted to make use of a machine (I was at that time interested professionally in the machine-works Tom Jenks was producing, but I knew I had to use something simpler than his data-spreadsheet works). This seemed to work well. God’s Rude Wireless is ‘a new improved cut up engine’ at https://web.archive.org/web/20070927003008/http://www.godsrudewireless.co.uk/cutup/cutup.htm

You can read more about Maarten here, and see some interesting images of him (?) and Holland: here


and here is a second poem we wrote (which was left out of the book for space reasons): I had to cut my own creations first...

Read more about the European Union of Imaginary Authors here and here

More on Twitters for a Lark here and hereAll the collaborators, nearly all of the others nearly human, at least, are introduced at links available here.