I’m currently on a Kevin Connolly reading binge – that’s the Canadian poet who came out for Wellington’s last International Festival of the Arts. His books Drift, Happyland and Revolver are in my reading pile.
He caught my attention because his surreal, not-making-sense poems seem to challenge the idea of what poetry is while, at the same time, being skillful and good to read. They scoot around the flotsam of contemporary society and the way we exist in it. Making jokes in poetry is an art.
It makes me think about art work that challenges accepted forms and subject matter and how exciting it is to discover someone doing it well. Of course, I immediately want to be like that, which is impossible. The flip side is when invention and challenge aren’t support by some depth and invention by itself eventually runs out of steam.
Here’s some links to people who’ve said more erudite things than me about Kevin Connolly.
I’d be interested to know if anyone else has been reading Kevin or looking at art work with these qualities.