Broken Stories by Reuben Woolley, published by 20/20 Vision Publishing, 2017
Innovative in form, though some may think of ee cummings. In this work there are no capital letters.
Few full stops, never at the end of poems and no page numbers.
Music is integral to Reuben’s Broken Stories. At its centre the myth of Eurydice. At the start “& all that jazz”, the poet plays a horn.
do they play
in your heaven
where bird flies
“bird” perhaps a reference to the late innovative saxophone player and composer Charlie Parker.
The notion of looking back as a form of loss, the recovery of the dead through grief. Stories of the broken enacted by broken lines by a shore, in flight. Ancient stories hinted at like “splinterman”. Well worth a google.
Often modern poetry is seen as having a close kinship with jazz, especially in the jazz poets of the 1930s and 40s. It is important to read Reuben’s poetry out loud to catch his rhythms, intonations and lyricism. And the repeated references to silence, bone, blood, sand and sky. Poetry to be reread. Poetry rich in reference, resonance and connection. A must buy. I look forward to reading future work by this stunning poet.