Author(s): Elizabeth Morton
In lieu of flowers, bring weeds. Elizabeth Mortons poems look unflinchingly at a raw and unstable world the crash, the aftermath, the comeback, the black heat at the centre of things. The poems in Mortons second collection are charged with a visceral energy. This is poetry as incantation: an intense, larger-than-life, tactile experience. Underneath the surface of the contemporary world of Pokémon, The Cosby Show and hospital cubicles, the reader is drawn into a dreamscape of creeks and bogs, a fiery meadow and the guts of the sea. A blindman circles a Minotaur; a black horse rides through the pages. As the reader finds handholds within Mortons poems, they may trace a dislocation between the voices here and the worlds into which theyre thrown a strangely askew New Zealand, a mythological America, in liminal spaces where identity and meaning become blurred and uncertain.Jammed full of want, need, despair, love and politics, these are poems of archaeology and identity where will we dig for our selves? By what names are we called? By whom are we known? This is darkly funny, unsettling writing that strips all the meat from the bones, always writing the same story.