Friday, September 26, 2014

New poetry release by John O’Connor, Christchurch

Title: Whistling in the Dark

Author: John O’Connor

ISBN: 978-0-473-29151-8
Price: $25.00
Extent: 95 pages
Format: 148mmx210mm
Publication: September 2014
Publisher: HeadworX

Cover image: Eion Stevens, ‘prisoner of conscience’, 1985

Whistling in the Dark

Whistling in the Dark comprises two approximately equal sections: (1) poems and (2) prose poems; both sections were written between 1994 and 2012.

The poems cover a range of topics and themes and include ‘Mother and Child’, the winning poem of the Poetry Society’s International Poetry Competition, 2006. All poems have been previously published in magazines, journals and anthologies.

The prose poems are, more accurately, a combination of prose poems and hybrid forms of the prose poem. As such they represent a departure from the standard prose poem as found in NZ and international journals and magazines. Again, there is a range of topics and themes and most of the pieces have been previously published in magazines, journals and anthologies.

Whistling in the Dark is the 11th book of poems by John O’Connor.

About the Author

John O’Connor’s poetry has been widely published and is represented in Essential New Zealand Poems (2000) and other anthologies. His haiku have been internationally anthologized  and translated into eight languages. In 1997 he received an Honorary Diploma, “for contribution to world haiku”, from the Croatian Haiku Association and in 2001 a Museum of Haiku Literature Award, Tokyo, for “best of issue” in Frogpond International, a special issue of Haiku Society of America’s periodical, Frogpond, featuring haiku selected from 52 countries and language communities. In 2000 his fifth book of poems, A Particular Context, was voted one of the best five books of New Zealand poetry of the 1990s by members of the New Zealand Poetry Society. He was co-winner of the Open Section of the NZPS International Poetry Competition in 1998 and outright winner of both the Open and the Haiku sections of the same competition in 2006.

Sample Poem

Scene From a Lost Movie


small town in the West

the stranger has just ‘rode in’
his ’49 Caddie rusting

on the dusty street outside
a saloon called the Shining Cloud


he buys a good ole boy
a whisky for the talk

he never tires of /
a girl picks up a blue guitar

& sings his pain to sleep /
he doesn’t want to leave

her lyrics on the sawdust floor


when he rides out tomorrow

he says he’ll follow the wheat fields

& the rain

© John O’Connor 2014

Whistling in the Dark distributed by HeadworX
4C/19 Cottleville Tce
Wellington 6011
New Zealand

No comments: