New Words 2011

Review: In Defence of Protozoans

Aberdeen launch of Stuart B. Campbell's new collection


Thursday 15 September 2011

Original listing

Books and Beans, Aberdeen [Map]

On the evening of Thursday the 15th the Books and Beans audience enjoyed one of the startling unlikely juxtapositions of style, form, and view-point that have become a New Words hall mark. The launch of Stuart B. Campbell's 4th collection, with attendant contributions by Catherine Jaraszkiewicz and Catriona Yule, was a reminder of how diverse and deeply felt are the concerns of poets living and working in the region.

Stuart B. Campbell

Stuart B. Campbell's preoccupations with accuracy, the gathering of knowledge, and his multi-disciplinary forays to find and represent objective truths and meaning are redolent of the work of nineteenth century humanist scientists collecting and categorizing, building living moral taxonomies. Stuart read with the voice, rhythm and challenge of a slow swell against rock, his audience leaning forward to catch the softer notes. Serious, scholarly, committed, his book deserves to do well.

Catherine Jaraszkiewicz

Catherine Jaraszkiewicz was a complete and polemical surprise. She presented apparently sentimental autobiographical narratives in commonplace rhythms and end rhymes each of which ended with a sting in the tail or a slap in the face — her themes revealed as Treblinka, paedophilia, suicide and the Katyn Forest massacre. The audience gasped and applauded loudly.

Catriona Yule

Those who love Catriona Yule's work will have been further enamoured. She has progressed naturally to writing haiku now. The resulting delicate metaphors and her beguiling delivery were perfectly matched. Her ability to sustain a metaphor wonderfully was demonstrated in a crocus poem. The fabulous Ms Yule is in full danger of becoming exquisite. Hurrah.

Review by John Mackie

Photos by Cal Wallace

More images from In Defence of Protozoans

Promoted by

Poetry Aberdeen

Supported by

Books and Beans
North East Writers


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