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Rough Breathing

Selected Poems

Harry Gilonis

Rough Breathing
RRP: GBP 13.59
Available This title is available for academic inspection (paperback only).
eBook (EPUB)
ISBN: 978 1 784103 73 6
Categories: 20th Century, 21st Century, British, Translation
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: March 2018
240 pages (print version)
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: Paperback, eBook (Kindle), eBook (PDF)
Digital access available through Exact Editions
  • Description
  • Author
  • Reviews
  • For over three decades Harry Gilonis’s poetry has milled cheerfully in the literary avant-garde: Rough Breathing is the first substantial gathering of his poems. Most previously appeared in small-press publications or little magazines on both sides of the Atlantic; some are published here for the first time.

    Gilonis’s work has a light, lucid beauty underpinned by formal and procedural invention, with lyrics written from love and landscape as well as poems made from the innards of language. There is collaged bird-song, experimental versioning from the ancient Chinese and text written by a ‘bot’. Borders between ‘original’ and ‘translation’ are straddled, or blurred, in intriguing and innovative ways.

    Objectivist after the fact, party without nostalgia to the British Poetry Revival, cognisant of L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E, Gilonis’s poems are aware of their shape on the page and the sound they make as they go past the ear. They insist on being themselves as fully and openly as possible. The versatility and range of Rough Breathing, its use of processes, transparent or opaque, make it – besides being a fine collection – a radical pattern-book to challenge teachers and students alike.

    An Introduction by Philip Terry offers biographical and critical context. ‘What becomes increasingly clear as one reads,’ Terry writes, ‘is that this is a body of work of the highest ambition, and highest order.’
    Harry Gilonis is a poet, editor, publisher, and critic writing on art, poetry, and music. His books of poetry include Reliefs (1988), Pibroch (1996), Reading Hölderlin on Orkney (1997), walk the line (2000), eye-blink (2010), and For British Workers (2017), as well as collaborations with both poets – such as from ... read more
    'Reading this selection of Harry Gilonis' poetry was a revelation...This is an impressive volume from a poet whose elegant, witty, and at times angry poetry unquestionably deserves a wider public. There are valuable notes at the end 'unpacking' some of the references and giving background on the poems. Hopefully publication of Rough Breathing will bring Gilonis many new readers.'
    Simon Collings, Stride Magazine

    'Gilonis's Rough Breathing: Selected Poems covers three decades of his work - meticulous, beautifully poised among many traditions: essential poetry-reading, essential-poetry reading.'
    Carol Rumens, The Guardian - 'a small alba' was Poem of the Week, 14th May 2018

    'There is indeed a sense of the renewal of language through Rough Breathing as I turn from page to page, or maybe it might be more appropriate to say from leaf to leaf: Harry Gilonis's poetry consists of words made new.'
    Ian Brinton, Tears in the Fence
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