This Side of Silence

C.K. Stead


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Arc Publications
1 October 2023
ISBN: 9781911469452
114 pages

From the publisher

In this poignant new poetry collection, one of New Zealand’s most significant voices reflects on home, on away, and on friends living and dead. ‘I lead a life of quiet medication’, the poet claims, ‘longing for foreign shores, adventure and death.’ But whether swimming to the yellow buoy or remembering an encounter in Belsize Park, in the thick of it or asking, ‘what next?’, Stead’s voice is intimate, amusing and always compelling.

‘This Side of Silence resounds with intimations of mortality, compounded with reactions to a contemporary world of pandemic, climate change and war, but this collection is not in the least morose. Rather, the poetry is enlivening – concrete,
particular, detailed and often playful. There is a wealth of sensory content, and each poem has its own satisfying shape, with easy idiomatic speech forming its special kind of rhythm. In this book a major modern poet continues to “live and sing”.’—MacDonald P. Jackson

‘Stead has his usual quick wit and steely eye for his world and, at 90, has the linguistic dexterity that many thousands of aspiring writers can only dream about.’—Chris Reed, NZ Booklovers