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The Icon Maker

The Icon Maker

by Paul Stubbs

The poetry of Paul Stubbs presents an original and unorthodox re-evaluation of religion and human existence, powered by a visionary impulse which, in The Icon Maker, sees the principal theological players in a world 'beyond' religion called to account and made to face uncomfortable transformation into corporeal beings. Resolute atheist, jaded sinner, ecclesiastical man - all are the poet's targets, and in this powerful second collection, we encounter a poet working uncompromisingly with language, hounding it to keep it awake and to take on the unrefined materials of his imagination.

of Paul Stubbs' first collection, The Theological Museum (Flambard, 2005)

...this is indeed a remarkable collection, original to the point of idiosyncrasy, tussling with language, much in line with Eliot's pronouncement that the poet must become more and more comprehensive, more allusive, more indirect, in order to force, to dislocate, if necessary, language to his meaning. The result is not an easy or comfortable read but it is certainly a challenging and exciting one... He [Stubbs] takes on big themes, playing great earnest metaphysical games with religion and ways of perceiving the world. In this he resembles Philip Pullman in His Dark Materials. He is an ambitious poet of real originality.

Matt Simpson

Stubbs is one of very few living poets whose work I go back to.

Alice Oswald

[Of Lorna Thorpe, A Ghost in my House, and 'The Icon Maker':] These are both very powerful books; they contrast in content, style and subject matter, but compare in their strength, originality and the sheer quality of the writing.

Ian Pople, The North, Issue 42, Oct 2008

106 pages
ISBN: 978 1904614 517 (pbk)
ISBN: 978 1904614 98 2 (hbk)
Published 1st July 2008
Published July 2008