Heat Wave

Julian Stannard


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Salt Publishing
15 April 2020
ISBN: 9781784632182
112 pages

From the publisher

Heat Wave is a form of poetic cabaret,‘What good is sitting, alone in your room?/ come hear the music play!’ If a cabaret is full of high jinks it can also land punches – truth can be masked by the burlesque and the grotesque: ‘Tell all the truth but tell it slant’.

Luke Kennard has said of Stannard’s writing, ‘I know of few other poets who can write of cruelty, hysteria and disappointment with such levity and grace.’ Will Eaves speaks of a ‘comic vitality’. Heat Wave seeks to unsettle and wrong-foot; it refuses to adopt a sententious or holier than thou attitudes regarding the many crises which confront us. The poems subvert as well as entertain.

Critics have noted ‘a tonal control and simultaneous considerations of matters mordant and gleeful.’ The reader might weep and laugh on the same page. The lyrical and the demotic might walk hand in hand.