Exploring what creates both distance and closeness between people; how we are shaped and our individual strangeness and bonds, Helen Pizzey moves with assurance from the humorous to the tragic, often resting on the dividing line between the two. Her oblique cameos and aslant observations play with the boundaries of the odd and the familiar. Rooted in the natural world, her imagery evokes a sense of communal life that is at times absurd and sometimes beautiful.
These poems pierce the skin and the outer fabric of our worlds. Unflinching, and with a fine surface tension, they surprise and delight. There's the wit of the prose poem 'Thaw', for instance, with its 'manically depressed iceberg', or such a perception as 'the tilt of a pear / against its hip-joined shadow' ('Still Life'). Helen Pizzey makes it new, sharply refreshing the palate.
A drunk roaming in search of a fight or sheriff
with its blazing badge, trying to keep the peace.
We open our mouths to it like a blind, bald chick
knowing one day it will un-nest us, force us to fly.