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Review: Ai! Ai! Pianissimo, by Astrid Alben

This, the first collection by Astrid Alben, an Anglo-Dutch poet, born in 1973, who has had poems printed in Stand, Magma and the TLS, is fresh, funny and as daring as it is dazzling. She describes, in Stuffing for Being, the puzzled reflection / in her face not quite he almost; in Take-away Heart the cheerless chicken / wings flailing in their marinade : and, in Bucking Bronco; how she is Tired so tired of being his rodeo ride / bucking his matchstick legs / jolting backward sideways and up / hey ho hey ho. Fittingly, the final poem, which begins: In the event of my death, invites the reader to remember that I got some really, really good sex / (although not necessarily from you).