The Ofi Press Magazine

International Poetry and Fiction from Mexico City

Poetry Review

 

“Kissing Angles” by Sarah Fletcher

Dead Ink Press, USA, 2015

34 pages              

£5

Poetry Review by Jack Little

Published in the Ofi Press issue 42 

 

 

British based American poet Sarah Fletcher has won the Christopher Tower Poetry Prize and in 2012, she was a Foyle young poet. ‘Kissing Angles’ is her first poetry pamphlet.

The book is elegant in its production. The first poem introduces the reader to the first playful portrait of a man: “You are/all slink, all water-hips,/ a screech of smoke escaping/ from your lips…” (Vision of My Lover Dressed in Drag).

We meet other men of different ilks; in The Boxer  we meet: “the only man…to look/ at Hull at call it Babylon”.  Fletcher’s Angels are often humourous figures but we find sadness in their love and lust too. The Matador is one of these, the macho: “He can’t stop touching me/ and I realise that I am part of this act:/ the torero’s muleta, his red slip./ He kisses me. His tongues feels like a whip.” Passion runs throughout the collection with other startling images: “She loves to lick/ his Atlantic blue thick bruise/ from chest to neck…” (The Wrestler and the Sailor’s Daughter).

The collection asks difficult questions that take a satisfying bite out of the crunchy apple of the theme of love: “I wonder if we’d get along/ in situations of forced friendship/ or necessity…” The simple yet striking line “each pain is unique” pricks at every painful memory we have each felt as readers, and lovers of all backgrounds (This Is a Confessional Poem).

My favourite poem in the collection is Lads: “with them, sex feels like miming drowning;/ with gapped mouth gasping, their rower’s arms/ too heavy from the drink to pull them back/ to shore”. The poem gets better with each read.

Kissing Angles is a bold first pamphlet from a talented and exciting young poet whom, I’m sure, we will be seeing a lot more of in the coming years.

You can read more of Sarah’s work in The Ofi Press at: http://www.ofipress.com/fletchersarah.htm