Friday, September 01, 2006

The Book tag

It was Cailleach, who tagged me, if you’re looking for someone to blame for this entry:

1.One book that changed your life?
Letters and Papers from Prison by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, which made me look at faith in an entirely different light. Teach Yourself Writing Poetry by Matthew Sweeney and John Hartley Williams, which got me writing poetry and made me think about it in a different way to how I'd thought before.

2.One book you've read more than once?
The End of the Affair by Graham Greene. There have been more, and several poetry books.

3.One book you'd want on a desert island?
A really big anthology of poetry.

4.One book that made you laugh?
The Colour of Black and White by Liz Lochhead

5.One book that made you cry?
I can’t remember ever crying at a book, although many books have made me feel sad.

6.One book that you wish you had written?
Collected Poems by Edwin Morgan, although I’m more than happy that Edwin Morgan wrote it.

7.One book you wish had never been written?
The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown – I hate bad writing that becomes really popular, so that book really is just representative of a very wide phenomenon.

8.One book you are currently reading?
The Full Indian Rope Trick by Colette Bryce, The Asylum Dance by John Burnside, and Selected Poems by Czeslaw Milosz. That’s three, I suppose, but that’s how I read.

9.One book you have been meaning to read?
Collected Poems by Lee Harwood

10.Five people I am tagging:
No one, but by all means have a shot, anyone who wants to.

4 comments:

Sorlil said...

You read 3 books at a time as well?! Interesting list but I think the big anthology of poetry on a desert island is cheating a little!

Cailleach said...

A big anthology of anything could prove useful on a desert island. If you had no kindling, it could prove the difference between being unable to eat or keeping warm *very much tongue in cheek*

Nice to see your list Rob. Poetry is a lifeblood for you.

Arlene said...

enjoyed your list, rob. will have to check out liz lochhead's — i'm always open for a laugh.

it's great to see that you, too read several books at the same time.

thanks for dropping by my place and wishing me a long life. hee. have added your blog to my links.

a.

Rob Mackenzie said...

Cheers, everyone. I think being stuck on a desert island with only one poet might prove soul-destroying, but I'm not sure the anthology I'd want yet exists!

Arlene, Liz Lochhead's poems are wide-ranging and can make you cry as much as laugh, but her funny ones have that rare quality of being actually funny. I find most of what passes for "humorous verse" sends me to sleep. A quick excerpt from Liz (not all her stuff in is Glasgow dialect, but this is. I hope it's comprehensible). 'Garthamlock' is a tough housing estate in the east of Glasgow:

Almost Miss Scotland

The night I
Almost became Miss Scotland
I caused a big stramash
When I sashayed on in my harristweed heathermix onepiece
And my 'Miss Garthamlock' sash.

I wis six-fit-six, I wis slinky
(Yet nae skinnymalinky) -
My waist was nipped in wi elastic,
My powder and panstick were three inches thick, Nails? Long, blood-rid and plastic.
So my big smile'd come across, I'd larded oan lipgloss
And my false eyelashes were mink
With a sky blue crescent that was pure iridescent
When I lowered my eyelids to blink.

Well, I wiggled tapselteerie, my hands were that peerie
While a kinna Jimmy Shandish band
Played 'Flower of Scotland'-
But it aw got droont oot wi wolfwhistles -
And that's no countin 'For These Are My Mountains'
- See I'd tits like nuclear missiles.

(...It goes on like that for a while until she sees the true light and converts to feminism):

...in a bacchanalian Revenge of the Barbie Dolls
Crying 'All for One and One for All!'
We advanced on the stage, full of bloodlust and rage -
But I cannot tell a lie, the truth is that I
Just stuck on a headsquerr and snuck away oot o therr -
I know I did right, it wisnae contrary -
And I let my oaxters grow back in
Really rid and thick and hairy...

(I think I should leave things hanging there...)