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Beware the Creeper!

Iain's life as a psychotic crimefighter

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Good news at last!

After the reported deaths of Arthur C Clarke and Anthony Minghella were clouding the day, it was nice to receive an e-mail from catsparx  that sent a sharp beam of sunlight through the clouds making everything so much, much better. Cat wrote to inform me that a mutual friend of ours(who we haven't seen in ages) has won New Zealand's richest literary award.

Well done, David Beach!

David is a wonderful poet (there are some samples of his work in a review of Abandoned Novel) and well deserves the accolade (and the money!)

(Of course, it's going to be difficult to contact him as I remember him shunning computers - an old fashion phone call may have to suffice.)

Here's his poem Parachute -from the Best New Zealand Poetry 2003

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Hallooo Hallay! I chortle in my joy.

I thought I'd found his blog, but it was someone else. There are several David Beachs out there. Beware of imitations.

Your blog post is way better presented than mine. I was in too much of a hurry to blab the news!!!

But you included the wonderful description of David as a poet's poet (I remember him saying he was going to focus exclusively on sonnets - which he appears to have done!) so we both win.

I remember him writing a Murder She Wrote Young Cat adventure story as a birthday gift for me one year. I wonder where I put it???

While I'm all for poets receiving recognition and large reward for their work, I'd have to see more to understand why his work is wonderful. At this stage the most telling paragraph is this:

Abandoned Novel introduces a strikingly different new voice to New Zealand poetry. These sixty decasyllabic sonnets are formally rigorous and bracingly anti-poetic. David Beach takes ideas, information and units of language from many sources, and transforms them into lines that are both deliberately prosaic and mysteriously musical.

and I'm not sure why 'bracingly anti-poetic' or 'deliberately prosaic' is clever or accomplished. Especially when the poets who seem to win the acclaim are the very ones who write this kind of chopped up prose.

Sorry to be the bugbear but it seems that as a poet I now have more in common with gangsta rappers than my fellow bards.

Gangsta rappers aren't poets?!?

Oops. I was just going to go back and wipe my 'contribution' since I don't really feel I have the right to rain on your collective parades. You apparently know the gentleman concerned and my particular impression of what is and isn't poetic is therefore all but irrelevant to this discussion.

Gangsta rappers poets? Well not in the conventional book-signing, writer's centre-gathering, anthology-publishing sense. Don't worry, I've been alienating postmodernists for years now and that's not going to change. Maybe I'll stick to song lyrics, though of course half of those don't rhyme or alliterate or assonate or any of the other bugger wonderful things that once made this whole thing worth doing.

Don't worry, I've been alienating postmodernists for years now and that's not going to change.

Heh - I remember a conversation with David when we were discussing starting a pre-modernist movement.

(Back in the days of the Drunk Poets Society.)

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