PICK OF THE WEEK
Saturday 09 January 1999
Paul Muldoon (above), the much-imitated grand wizard of playful punning narratives, makes the trip over from the States to read from his latest collection, Hay. A skittering whirligig of words, Hay offers curious illuminations on emu-catching, takes a spin round his record collection (Nirvana to Leonard Cohen) and dips into the double-scoop vanilla cleavage of the girl in the ice-cream shop.
Alongside Ken Smith and David Harsent, Fred D'Aguiar delivers his sequence Bill of Rights, about the 1978 Guyanese mass-suicide at Jonestown; while clever-boy formalist Glyn Maxwell reads from The Breakage, with its jaunty catalogue of sorrinesses such as "Robert Falcon Scott who lost the race to a Norwegian, / And anyone who's ever spilt the pint of a Glaswegian."
Late Review polymath Tom Paulin reads from Ted Hughes' Birthday Letters, Susan Wicks reads for Welsh newcomer Sarah Corbett who'll be busy having her baby; and last year's prizewinner Don Paterson reads on behalf of Jo Shapcott: "Lean forward and put a finger / on the spot you think the dream is", Shapcott invites in her sultry collection, My Life Asleep. Enjoy her fantastical leaps into the minds of mad cows, metamorphising nymphs, and the lovelorn dove left behind on Noah's ark while his mate went looking for olive twigs.
Jackie Kay slips wittily between the themes of disease and racial prejudice in her spirited collection Off Colour, diving from dentist's chair to sick bed, to dissect the "scary bits cowering inside the flesh" fortified by a bottle of "orange nostalgia" Lucozade. In Rembrandt Would Have Loved You, Ruth Padel conducts the "fugue of held-in hurt" of a passionate affair, trilling with joyous late-night sing-songs, and broken liaisons: "Whatever self is, I'd like mine to wake up with yours."
TS Eliot Prize Reading, Almeida Theatre, London N1, tomorrow, 7.30pm (0171-359 4404) pounds 8/pounds 6 concs
Potter's attempt to create an Essex Taj Mahal was a lovely treattv
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Crystal meth addict 'gouged out his eyes and ate them' while high on drug, Australian MP claims
- 2 Saudi Arabia 'seeking to head United Nations Human Rights Council'
- 3 Group of students refused entry to Leicester nightclub 'because they are black'
- 4 Irish people are travelling home from all over the world so they can vote to legalise gay marriage
- 5 Arsenal fan asks the Queen for tickets to the FA Cup final - gets a reply from Buckingham Palace
Cannes Film Festival rejects women from red-carpet screening of pro-LGBT romance 'Carol' for not wearing high heels
'We didn't really think we'd get away with it': The astonishing story of how two young Irish men completed an audacious £7m art heist
Game of Thrones rape scene criticised as 'disgusting' by US senator Claire McCaskill who says she's 'done' with show
Beyonce angers fans by pouring expensive champagne into hot tub in Nicki Minaj 'Feeling Myself' video
Eurovision 2015: Armenia's Genealogy forced to change song title in wake of 'too political' Armenian Genocide claims
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
Report finds that Britain's wages are the most unequal in Europe
Almost a third of school pupils believe 'Muslims are taking over our country', study claims
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
Gay marriage 'Bert and Ernie' cake bakery found guilty of discrimination in Northern Ireland