NEW HOPE INTERNATIONAL REVIEW

An independent small press poetry review

NHI independent review
CLARE E POTTER: SPILLING HISTORIES
Cinnamon Press
Ty Meiron
Glan yr Afon
Tanygrisiau
Blaenau Ffestiniog
Gwynedd
LL41 3SU
UK
ISBN 0 9549433 7 6
7.99

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CLARE E POTTER: SPILLING HISTORIES

An attractive front cover by Mike Fortune-Wood showing presumably a humanised or robotic symbol of personal history memories 'spilled out' as it were from a paddle-steamer provides anticipatory interest in 58 pages of poems in this 64-page perfect-bound booklet.

The poetry is realistic and hard hitting with a variety of unusual and sometimes telling twists and imagery. Sometimes I wished that the lines proceeded in older traditional style, meaning less energy for a critic since the work needs some wrestling with in its modern style. This was partly due to it being a record of historic encounters. With other subject matter, this reservation probably would not apply.

Subject matter can seem at odds with title, e.g. KATRINA I, KATRINA II are respectively subheaded THE NEW KITCHEN and NO FOOL LIKE AN OLD FOOL. The former poem starts

	We were never quite sure if Miss Karlene was a woman.
	She wore a muumuu, bright print, slip-on pumps
	and carried her Pomeranian puppy under layers of arm.
Later a Mr.David is introduced. Relationships are unclear. The latter poem mentions a Mr.Tommy and Betsy, and the same lack of clarity applies.

The book is full of exciting approaches and lines, free from philosophical waffle and subjective dreaming.

reviewer: Eric Ratcliffe.