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Review: Atlantic Drift: an Anthology of Poetry and Poetics, ed. James Byrne

It is this resistance to closure, this refusal to adopt the safe line for poetry that is presented year after year in too many Secondary Schools, that makes this new anthology a box of fireworks.


Look in this anthology for the America of Charles Bernstein and Claudia Rankine, Nathaniel Mackey and Lyn Hejinian; look this side of the Atlantic for Allen Fisher and John James, Geraldine Monk and Zoƫ Skoulding. We are presented with "Poets in both directions across the water" who "have influenced, and continue to influence each other in terms of practice and poetics."

Atlantic Drift continues this collaboration and exchange in its alphabetic juxtaposition of twenty-four contributors and these poems ignite to provide a most effective and immediate anthology of the living power of poetry and poetics. As such it takes its place in the tradition of Donald Allen's 1960 volume and Iain Sinclair's 1996 publication, Conductors of Chaos.