Sunday, 20 December 2020

An exceptional object poem by Christopher James

I have to admit I’m a fan of object poems, especially those that take a seemingly insignificant item and invest it with personal meaning. This process often involves a so-called “poetic leap” from the object to the experience.

In this respect, Christopher James’ recent object poem on And Other Poems (see here) is exceptional for several reasons. First of all, it doesn’t make one but several leaps, all of which are successful. And then the object in question convincingly comes to life. And then it gradually gives up further mysteries and details as the poem progresses.

Such a layering of elements is extremely difficult to achieve in an object poem, but the result is terrific depth and a delicious degree of nuance. Recommended reading that will lift you out of this grim, grim set of current circumstances...!

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