Rupert Loydell: Wildlife
Published 15 April 2011
Paperback, 80pp, 8.5x5.5ins, £8.95 / $15
In these mercurial poems, real and imaginary events combine with overheard, quoted and misquoted voices to produce a slippery and unreliable series of opinionated poems. What appear at first to be heartfelt confessions reveal themselves to be exercises in ventriloquism, argumentative fictions that seek to subvert and surprise the reader. This poetry is a different kind of beast to what you might have expected.
Download a sample PDF from this book here.
"Wildlife reveals a tangible life lived: through friendships, family, in the company of other poets and artists. A life lived reading and writing poetry, always thinking, rethinking, questioning, and collaging experience into meaning. Sometimes a life of uncertainty and doubt, in which others 'drift through life / without touching the sides in contrast to my friction burns'. But always a life of warm and engaging humour: a man 'unqualified' to dream; another teaching himself Lithuanian 'translating his misunderstanding'; and the many surprising twists of image and language in the rhetorical variations of 'Animals Are Not Your Friends'. It urges its readers: Enjoy Your Wild Life." —Andy Brown
"With wit and lyricism, self-effacement and compassion, exact observation and unobtrusively precise language, Loydell offers poems which are wildly alive, unpredictable, and fun. One cautions against 'jumping out of the moving poem' and who would want to? If you want intelligent pleasures, you've come to the right book." —John Levy
"I've always admired prolific artists—people who create so much that the ebb and flow of their career becomes an interesting texture in itself, such that you have to take a long view, the side-projects and one-offs along with the studio albums. Wildlife feels like Rupert Loydell's most 'major label' release in a while. A drawing together of his various poetic personae and techniques into a focused, decisive work, undertaken with fresh intensity. The happy coincidence of collage runs seamlessly into mordant wit, pathos, the hard-to-suppress wince of real self-knowledge. The 'Animals Are Not Your Friends' poems in particular are heart-rending, funny and vital. It's great to see the band back together again." —Luke Kennard
"Through plain and stark language, Loydell creates a poetics of inner chaos which speaks for modern humanity. With his scalpel he reveals the emptiness at the heart of outwardly successful lives, meditates on death's sneaky approach and calls everything we hold dear into question." —Angela Topping
Read an online review here
& another by Steven Waling at Magma here.
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