British Titles

Robert Sheppard - A Translated Man

£9.95

Robert Sheppard - A Translated Man

Paperback, 130pp. 9x6ins

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Robert Sheppard has given this book over to his own invention, the fictional Belgian poet René Van Valckenborch. Apparently writing in both Flemish and Walloon, and translated and edited by entities as shadowy (and dodgy) as himself, Van Valckenborch's split oeuvre derives from the linguistic and cultural divide within contemporary Belgium. By the time Van Valckenborch disappears into poetic silence he seems an enigma of his own making, a comic figure with tragic attributes, a mystery to all swept up in his apparition. When his story is finished he leaves behind the deliberately discontinuous evidence of a dual poetic adventure — one half siding with history and opting for a breathlessly recurring triplet verse, the other obsessing over place and space and restlessly and increasingly playing with experimental forms. Behind and within them all, Sheppard is extending his formal and referential range — from homages to film-makers to Twitterodes, from accounts of tribal masks to cuboid quennets, and poems about Belgium of course. Above all, he is exploring the limits of the author-function. This is an imaginary collection with real poems in it.

 

 

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