The back blurb describes this collection of poetry as 'a celebration of the human condition...Exhilarating, funny, and challenging writing by a poet at the top of her game'. I would agree with all those points and I found this collection multi-layered, but accessible, vivid in concrete imagery, but with a light touch, and there is a certain other-worldliness too. Among my favourites were 'Drought' which brought me back to those early adolescent sensations which we don't even know are about sexual awakening. The ending is a killer: 'and my body/ soaking; soaking, everywhere'; 'Blizzard', an evocative vignette of a little child hiding under the stairs, the blizzard being strips of white plaster which 'flutter, slow and silent, his very own weather, a private, chalky blizzard'; 'Mussolini', a very funny account of a school incident when the speaker does an all too accurate impersonation of a teacher who has returned to the classroom without her awareness. I could go on, but suffice it to say that the multisensory imagery in Catherine Smith's poetry stays with me weeks after reading it.
This is the kind of poetry book you leave lying around, hoping that visitors will pick it up and leaf through. This is the kind of poetry that makes you seem prescient and sexy, just through owning it.
Catherine Smith chops up the modern world and delivers it in tasty morsels with all the precision and delicacy of a sushi chef. Memories strike unexpectedly like wasabi. Old lovers emerge like pickled ginger.
She writes sticky poetry, so you end up sniffing your fingers suspiciously and are aroused and alarmed by your discoveries.