|JOHN ELSBERG: SAILOR.|
|ISBN 0 903610 23 X|
The Los Angeles Times described the poetry of John Elsberg as having "a sort of British starkness and formality."
Coal City Review said of the poems in this collection: "In poems ranging formally from gentle rhythmic prolixity to near-concrete minimalism, Elsberg explores his relationship with his father ...the restraint and careful craftsmanship heighten the emotional impact by almost denying it."
Small Press Review wrote: "A dignified rapture born of pain ... Ostensibly a series of poems written over a number of years, what we really have here is one fairly long narrative poem with three compelling characters: father, mother and son/narrator. Each is brought into focus by way of interplay, one with another. ... Embraced by the narrator with a quiet and tolerant empathy is the rollercoaster ride of the soul; eschewed are melodrama, stridency, blame ... The concrete/visual poem Voice has the impact of a frozen frame, delaying time."
|extracts from reviews.|
|much more than the sum of its parts. The apparently artless reappearance of images in different poems invests them with significance: they make a complex pattern across the collection. They are coherent, they reflect each other; the integrated images, especially of water, cross-refer and make a coherent whole. Yet each poem is simple and clearly focussed; reading such a pared-down, wonderfully supple sequence is a rare pleasure. ... It is very difficult to pull quotations that convey the effect of this volume, because its power is built up through every word, every line. He even makes a pattern poem, VOICE, an essential part of the sequence. A finely written volume, sensitive not only to the emotions evoked, but to the fine nuances of language, and the silences between words.||Links (D A Prince).|
|A booklet of poems all about the authors father, who was a sailor. The poetry is very accessible and smooth, though many will leave you with a tear in the eye! It is quite sentimental, but not in a gushy, sickly way. It's an enjoyable booklet, with powerful poetry that comes from the heart.||Zine in an email (Andy Savage).|
|Poems that tell the life of his father with much pride and tenderness.... his father is "the salty tide" that washes on the poet's memory||Pulsar (Rip Bulkeley).|
|Impossible not to be moved .... I appreciated this time-trip back to the heyday of "Zen and the uses of enjambement"||Purple Patch (Geoff Stevens).|
|This is a moving collection dedicated to the author's father. It's skilfully written, none more so than "My Father's Thumb". The poetry is full of compassion, and is one of the best booklets ever published by NEW HOPE INTERNATIONAL||Eastern Rainbow (Paul Rance).|
|Compelling stuff||Lateral Moves (Alan White).|
|a tapestry of father poems, scenes, dreams and mindscapes that depict the lessons learnt by an observant son. ... the heavy sadness and private pain could bleed over into sentimentality with a lesser poet, but these fragments and moments recreate a man and his life, a story seen through the eyes of a thoughtful and considerate son.||Cynic Book Review (Louis McKee).|