2015 Titles

Michael Zand - The Messier Objects


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Michael Zand - The Messier Objects

Publsiehd 2015. Paperback, 8.5x5.5ins, £9.95. ISBN 9781848614567. [Download a sample PDF from this book here.]
The Messier Objects are a catalogue of astronomical bodies discovered and published by Charles Messier in 1771. In this new collection of poems, Michael Zand re-frames these objects as totemic symbols that celebrate the creative and social diversity of the human experience. The Messier Objects are thus meditations on the colour and complexity of the universe, and a rejection of a perceived drift towards cultural polarisation, simplification and standardisation.
“In Michael Zand’s latest book, the legendary clusters, galaxies and nebulae that Charles Messier ‘mistook’ for comets become ciphers for cultural and political adjustment, pleas for redirected looking. The mistake, Zand suggests, is only a mistake because thinking makes it so, and we need to see ‘beyond the main sequences/of the regular stars.’ Like all Zand’s writing, a hesitant and fractured syntax is used to probe dislocation across discourses, from ongoing conflict in the Middle East, through climate change to – with tongue only partly in cheek – the squabbles that continue to dog British poetry. These are serious poems not without humour, and they are all the more humane for it.” —Jeff Hilson 
“If the universe is expanding, then these poems follow that expansion by enlarging the possibilities of language…” —Peter Jaeger

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