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This House, My Ghetto

Authors: Mike Jenkins

Published by Seren

ISBN: 9781854111401

£5.95
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In This House, My Ghetto, Mike Jenkins makes room for eccentric petrol pump attendants, beleaguered immigrants, odd lodgers, famous footballers and ghosts.

This is not the Wales of postcards, but a very different post-modern, post-industrial landscape subject to the whims of petty bureaucrats lampooned in poems like 'Talking Shop', 'Anti-resort' and 'Psychodahlia' (a metal bloom that skewers a local councillor on the way to a spaghetti). Jenkins doesn't flinch from the bleak streets of 'Gurnos Shops' where the local 'takes his beer gut for a walk', and even a mountain has its say about pesky tourists in 'Yr Wyddfa Speaks Out', yet his ascerbic humour and energy frame the outrage and there are plenty of poems that, in contrast, praise and celebrate. In 'Blackberrying' and the long love poem 'A Strange Recognition' there is still room for the surprises of beauty and romance.

A humorous and impassioned reader of his work, Mike Jenkins has performed at numerous and diverse venues, read on radio and TV, and is a previous winner of the John Tripp Award for Spoken Poetry. He is a former editor of Poetry Wales, and a founder of the Red Poets Society, which organises regular performances and publishes an annual magazine of radical poetry. Wanting to Belong, his collection of interlinked short stories about teenagers in a south Wales valley, was Arts Council of Wales Book of the Year 1998, and has been filmed by the BBC.
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