Launch of The Ones Who Keep Quiet by David Howard

17:30 pm
19:00 pm
University Book Shop
378 Great King Street
Dunedin
The Ones Who Keep Quiet by David Howard The ones who keep quiet for the longest are the dead, yet there are echoes of them everywhere. A turn of the head brings a glimpse of a Victorian banker retrieving his top hat from the gutter. A walk across a bridge lets you pass the ghosts of a Catholic saint, a Marxist martyr, and a boy with a tin drum. The dead are there to be heard; they are also listening to you. The Ones Who Keep Quiet showcases David Howard’s ability to give our world a metaphysical mulling, which he achieves with memorable lyricism and an edgy attention to questions of identity and time, silence and isolation. Kathleen Grattan Poetry Award judge Emma Neale noted this new collection’s extraordinary range, from mordant puns and verse drama to unexpected polyphonic juxtapositions, ‘as if the poems have been internally pleated’. In his judder-bar voice, Dad pulls up Mum: ‘It’s good enough for the likes of us.’ Awake to the dream of a state house, the sound of an egg beater inside that dream; on orange formica, the second-best tea set; three ducks above a coke fire steaming smalls. My sister plaits her hair – ‘Fuck, let’s go to the shops so someone will talk to us.’ 'Poetry itself is treated as a form of prayer, both sacred and profane, but rife with little idiosyncrasies, sudden switches of pace, tone and meaning so as to create an ambiguous haze, almost at times an erotic reverie...' – David Eggleton 'Howard's greatest lyrical power is in apprehending the elusive. His is a poetry of the vanishing, of the shifting elsewhere, of loss lurking within the moment... the cerebral blends with the visceral with a brilliant lightness of touch.' – Kapka Kassabova, The Listener