31 October 2011

Tuesday poem: 'bach cds' by Vivienne Plumb

Vivienne Plumb: With a New Zealand mother and an Australian father, Vivienne Plumb has one foot on either side of the ditch. One of literature’s all-rounders, as well as six previous collections of poetry, she has written plays, short fiction and a novel. She has been the recipient of several awards, including the Buddle Findlay Sargeson Fellowship, the Hubert Church Prose Award, and the Bruce Mason Playwrighting Award.

This poem is from a book I've just published (!!!!) (as Seraph Press): The Cheese and Onion Sandwich and other New Zealand Icons: Prose Poems. This book grew out of a series of prose poems that Vivienne was writing, mainly about iconic New Zealand things. Some of these poems made their way to the middle section of Crumple, which I published last year, but I felt these New Zealand icon poems deserved a book of their own.

In these poems, which are often hilarious and frequently have a tug of fond nostalgia, I find a New Zealand I recognise. One filled with our national cuisine (represented by such things as whitebait, crockpots and muttonbird), with sheds, dogs, tramping, birds, sly-grogging, The Warehouse, inter-island ferries, inter-city buses, motels, gambling and bad weather.

Because summer is on the way (I even got sunburnt yesterday!), I chose this poem from the collection. When I first came across it, I thought it was Bach CDs (as in Johann Sebastian), but very quickly realised my mistake. We never had a family bach, but I've stayed in other peoples, and they are so often filled with the stuff you almost discard, but not quite.

There are a few more sample poems from the book that you can download on the Seraph Press site: http://www.seraphpress.co.nz/cheese-and-onion.html.

And, for even more poetry, check out the other Tuesday Poems: http://tuesdaypoem.blogspot.com/Link


Jennifer Compton said...

just love it - love the joke - it's just gr8

Mary McCallum said...

It's terrific! thanks Helen - and Vivienne - hope the book sells well it looks wonderful - hey! you won't believe it my 'word verification' is 'prose'!