These Things Are Real by Alan Wearne

Reviewed by
December 2017, no. 397
Peter Kenneally reviews 'These Things Are Real' by Alan Wearne

These Things Are Real

by Alan Wearne

Giramondo, $24 pb, 144 pp, 9781925336320

These Things Are Real by Alan Wearne

Reviewed by
December 2017, no. 397

Alan Wearne’s work over the past thirty years or so – dense, demanding, unique, rewarding – is like the oeuvre of a cinematic auteur: one that never quite got onto the syllabus, or brought out the crowds at Cinémathèque. Technique above all, most of the time, but allied with real if unfamiliar emotion, even if the narrative needed the reader to have the right stuff in the first place before it unfolded itself.

More recently, the scope has lessened, the rhyme schemes become less ornate, the characters more constrained. One wouldn’t have noticed in his previous book, Prepare The Cabin For Landing (2012), with its overt Juvenalian satire woven through the personal narratives. But in These Things Are Real the two things have largely separated. The verse narratives in the first half of the book are more sanguine than we are used to from Wearne, with the antiqueness of the scenarios a kind of enabling constraint rather than a period set.

Peter Kenneally reviews 'These Things Are Real' by Alan Wearne

These Things Are Real

by Alan Wearne

Giramondo, $24 pb, 144 pp, 9781925336320

From the New Issue

You May Also Like

Leave a comment

If you are an ABR subscriber, you will need to sign in to post a comment.

If you have forgotten your sign in details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to ABR Comments. We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.

Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.