Sputnik’s Cousin


ISBN: 9781921924675 Format: 144 pp Rights: World Release / Publication Date: 01 /05 /2014
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The poems and non-fiction collected in Sputnik’s Cousin rinse, relent and tumble in the slipstream of modernity. The indefatigable nature of objects – how they reverberate in the proximity of others and become polished from anachronistic histories retold – hum a progress charged by humanity’s witless pursuit of technology and civility. MacCarter’s poetry is a menagerie of Rube Goldberg contraptions; invoking idiom, definition, and refraction while harnessing the slope, speed and gravity of language to set in motion these absurdist machines. A light switch is turned off, but not by means of a flick: it took fracking in Russia, the building of a sand castle and a monastic jeep to do so. These are maximalist poems whose syntax is coerced through yoga … poems of humour, warning and visceral sound.

‘This man can squeeze the toxic juices from the shredded rinds of time like no-one else, so you’d better get into the stellar industrial-monkey that is Sputnik’s Cousin.’ – Justin Clemens, author of The Mundiad and Villain .

‘Why not pick and trick MacCarter’s own words from his poems so they describe what he’s achieved with this great rockyroadcake of a book? Bypassing fidgets and the bore of disambiguation // chockers with references, wry quips and scratch’n’sniff stickers // the Michigan Under-10s Regional Kite Flying Champion spooks your cookies like a gymnast nailing her landing. The author is more modest than this, but his words do not lie. ‘ – Ross Gibson, author of Seven Versions of an Australian Badland and The Summer Exercises.

Kent MacCarter is a writer and editor in Melbourne. His previous poetry collections are In the Hungry Middle of Here (Transit Lounge, 2009) and Ribosome Spreadsheet (Picaro, 2011). He is also editor of Joyful Strains: Making Australia Home (Affirm Press, 2013), a non-fiction collection of diasporic, essays from international authors now living, writing from Australia. He is Managing Editor of Cordite Poetry Review.