Review of ‘permitted to fall’ by Kevin Gillam

‘permitted to fall’ by Kevin Gillam
Sunline Press, Perth, 2007

The cover pictures,
perched-precarious,
any sunfaded discrete defined
housegarden factoryoffice.

Inside,
a precise fingertip voice speaks a view
from Dullsville’s desks,
parks, fences, beaches,
from a man’s mind,
from a son’s mind,
speaking to sea,
to sea moon God math Bach
waiting for something to
happen, knowing it won’t…
and it doesn’t,
though it might…

View from a quiet firstworld town
where, on the brink of nothing,
we’re ‘permitted to fall’,
but we don’t, we hang,
‘stoned on moment’, always ‘moment’,
‘moment’, and ‘riff’, and ‘moon’,
and ‘now’, and nouned
verbs: ‘and here’s
our pour, our pause and
thrum, our seethe in peak’

Yet ‘one only gets
one set of skin…
…one issue
of spirit, one
shot of truth’

One space for lush language:
‘can full of matt finish fate’ ‘face
and flesh a vitreous fiction’
‘you, the last unopened doll’ ‘you’re sky
called it skying, etched, wired, us as lit ants’

One space for the unsayable
in neatly unpunctuated lowercase shapes.

A small book, but maybe…
too long? Some poems seem routine,
same-again, today’s lines, math-o-matic —
holding something back?

From the Bach fan, the cellist, the player
of individual notes: pages
of one-shot words, of
five- or six-thud lines
filtered free of ‘the’ and ‘a’ —
‘big smoke through ‘burbs to
beach. here, booze lives next
to God ‘cross from fuel’ —
and on to a ‘green
that on Sat. hums with
black balls and white hats’.
A tight form/sense tug.
A halting stopshort gait
and a headlong surge.
Despair of ordinary speech?
Sendup of txt?
Or simply a game?
Whatever.

A unique voice not yet imitated
in its slim-picking formality,
its particularity.
Permitted.

(First published in Blast)

What do you think?