I’ve had two more (favourable) reviews of My Iron Spine recently.
The first was a brief review by the lovely Siobhan Harvey in Poetry NZ 39. She says it ‘underpins its author’s feminist concerns with a forceful poeticism’ and I am ‘at her best when lyrically reinventing the voices, lives and difficulties of the famous and infamous.’ She mentions ‘Handicrafts with Minnie Dean’, ‘Kate Sheppard and I go for a ride’ and ‘Partying with Katherine Mansfield’ as ‘just a few examples of Rickerby’s success throughout My Iron Spine in breathing new and cadent life into a faux-mythical cast.’
The second review was on the blog of Jennifer Sullivan, a US poet I’ve gotten to know on the net, due to our common interest in poet Anne Carson. So you can read the whole thing over there. But to make myself feel happy I’m going to quote my fav bits. She says that My Iron Spine is: ‘poignant, witty, tender, fun, and moving’, and says about the first section, ‘Flashes of déjà vu’: A charming voice waltzes through the narrative, saying things like, ‘I was playing hungry / hungry hippos / when my grandmother died’ or ‘I wonder / if the Kingdom of Heaven / is like the Titanic– / not enough lifeboats.’ Then she goes on to say lovely things about the other two sections, and even says that sometimes the book is akin to the work of our common idol, Anne Carson. High praise indeed.