A. Robert Lee
JUNE 2020 | ISBN: 978-87-92633-53-8
9×6 in; 100 pages; with 6 calligraphy illustrations by Camelia Elias
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Daylong, Nightlong, 24 Hour Poetry explores the time-partitions of life, light and dark, the all too usual clock. Capsules. Episodes. Angles. Daydream. Nightmare. This is poetry attached to the routine, the quotidian, but out to deliver a stab in the back. Days and Nights given their allotted measure but also turned about-face. A language of morning, noon, evening, not to say year, asked quite what it thinks it’s doing. Day in, day out. Night after night. And the upshot, swerves and contra-flows, pressed into versification and vignette.
A. Robert Lee has done it yet again! Another attractive volume of his topical, quirky poems has appeared, this time revolving around the theme of time. Never fear: For Lee “time” doesn’t mean just the standard passing of hours, days, years – but also on-time Amazon deliveries, “screen-time” as in The Twilight Saga, and “opening times” in pubs, airport gates, and careers.
It might seem stereotypical for an Englishman to write about queues, but Lee’s humor in shaping queues into a lifetime philosophy is far from common: “While waiting you might imagine your life has been a queue. / Long, short, or both.” A lyrical meditation titled “In Time of Plague” records Lee’s growing awareness of the sounds of nature during the corona lockdown in his Spanish home: “The viral toll may not, even ever, un-cease / But, day to night to day, life’s quiet loudness answers.” The calligraphic illustrations by Camelia Elias certainly enhance the playful chiaroscuro of Lee’s day/night poetry!
– Cathy Waegner, Amazon