Poetry Book Society Winter 2020 Recommendation

Written by Andrew McMillan for PBS Winter Bulletin 2020 No 267 on Wednesday, December 9th, 2020

The new form which Parkes has developed, the Gimbal, allows a pivot between, as the poet himself has described it “logic/theory/reason” and “emotion/feeling”; it’s an intricate but deftly deployed construction which speaks to the core strength of this collection, a fierce and exuberant language which is always held tightly in control. The collection contains some beautifully-realised poems of family and parents (“your mother’s embrace is a furnace”), or the wonderful poem ‘YEAR AD 87: BM14’, which salvages from “a world that showers so much terror on skin so dark” the joy and hope of the next generation.