Rack Press ever impresses – Poetry Review
The consistently reliable Rack PressTimes Literary Supplement
I have come to hope that a Rack Press pamphlet may be a tiny gift-box of unusually good poems – Alison Brackenbury, PN Review

Monday, 17 December 2007

The New Poets Are Coming!

Three new Rack Press poets are being launched in London on 15th January at the Swedenborg Hall in Bloomsbury at 6.30 (admission free with refreshments). Byron Beynon's Cuffs, Steve Griffiths' Landing and David Wheatley's Lament for Ali Farka Touré will be introduced and a further Welsh launch will take place on 11 April at the Dylan Thomas Centre in Swansea.

Each pamphlet costs £4 and ordering instructions are in the panel here in the top right hand corner.

Everyone is welcome to the launch and if you would like to know more please visit the Rack Press website. I am sorry for some sort of gremlin on the site at the moment which has sent the layout all over the place when seen in Windows: this is being examined by our IT team.

Sunday, 11 November 2007

Poetry London Praises Vaughan

The latest issue of Poetry London has a nice review by Kate Bingham of Dai Vaughan's Rack Press pamphlet, Inconsequences which opens with the marvellous sentence:
"There is something magical about a poet's bottom drawer."
Actually, we are too refined at Rack Press to use words like "bottom" but we would tentatively argue that Dai's work is top drawer. Kate writes interestingly and enthusiastically about the collection and concludes: "Dai Vaughan is better known for his fiction, but the strength of this pamphlet suggests he should look again at anything he might have in that bottom drawer."

Look out also for the 2008 series of Rack Press pamphlets which are currently in preparation!

Sunday, 7 October 2007

Rack Press Poets Flourish!

We are so pleased that Hazel Frew, one of our 2007 poets, a few copies of whose pamphlet, Clockwork Scorpion, are still left, is to have a full length collection published next year by Shearsman. Highly recommended!

The Latest Sphinx

The latest issue of Sphinx magazine, the unique publication from Scotland dedicated to pamphlet poetry (they use the word 'chapbook' which we like and are trying to persuade ourselves to adopt) has a brief reference to this blog for which we are grateful. Well worth subscribing to at www.happenstancepress.com.

Monday, 3 September 2007

The Elegance of Brevity

Thank you to the excellent The Rialto magazine from Norwich for praising our latest three pamphlets for having "the courage to be brief and elegant". We think this is a compliment and we appreciate it.

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Latest Reviews of Rack Press Poets

The latest issue of the Welsh magazine Planet has reviews of each of the three 2007 Rack Press titles. The reviewer, Richard Poole, praises Dai Vaughan's Inconsequences for its "tautness of style" and concludes that his sequence consists of: "Strong, sharp-edged poems." He says that Peter Dale's collection of epigrams, Eight by Five, is "a dense book, with much to admire and think about, from poignant reflections on loved ones, to laconic takes on middle-age and religion, to aperçus on poetry...All in all, excellent value...." From Hazel Frew's collection Clockwork Scorpion the reviewer, calling the poet "an image-maker", picked out "Doing Time" as the most successful poem where "Two cooks work side by side, engrossed." See below for how to order these collections or visit the Rack Press website


Wednesday, 8 August 2007

Meet Some More of Our Poets

In addition to Peter Dale (see post below) two other poets were published earlier this year by Rack Press. They are seen here at the London launch in January, Hazel Frew and Dai Vaughan. If you go to the Rack Press website you will see reviews of all the poets. Hazel's Clockwork Scorpion is a collection of delightfully original poems and Dai's Inconsequences is a collection by a writer perhaps better known for his highly innovative fiction and here showing another aspect of his talent. The well-attended launch in Bloomsbury is becoming something of an annual event and we hope to see you at the next one in January 2008. Full details will be posted here.

Tuesday, 7 August 2007

A New Valéry Translation by Peter Dale


Peter Dale, one of Britain's foremost poet translators, and author of a Rack Press collection of epigrams, Eight by Five (2007), launches this month from Anvil Press his bilingual edition of Charms and other pieces by the French poet Paul Valéry. This is a collection of the work of one of the most important twentieth century French poets and has been in preparation for thirty years. As Anvil puts it of Dale's work: "As ever, he takes the hardest - and, for the reader, most rewarding - route in making versions with corresponding rhyme and metre. The result is a fresh view of an intriguing poet, somewhat neglected but now revived in English."

Peter Dale is the author of notable translations of Dante's Divine Comedy and selections from Tristan Corbière, Jules Laforgue and François Villon.

Charms is available from Anvil Press Poetry, Neptune House, 70 Royal Hill, London SE10 8RF at £11.95 post free.

Eight by Five is available from Rack Press Poetry, The Rack, Kinnerton, Presteigne, Powys LD8 2PF at £4 post free.

Monday, 6 August 2007

Rack Press Relaunched


Welcome to the new blog of Rack Press which was re-launched in 2006 with three pamphlets, Lute Variations by Richard Price, The Green Buoy by John Barnie and The Narrators by Nicholas Murray. The following year, in January 2007, three more poets were published, Peter Dale with Eight by Five, Hazel Frew with Clockwork Scorpion and Dai Vaughan with Inconsequences.

Richard Price's pamphlet, Lute Variations was reviewed in the Times Literary Supplement on 18th May 2007. Reviewer David Wheatley observed: "Price's fine versions are a model of collaborative intertextuality, each version blending suggestively with the next. Price is an inquisitive and versatile writer and...the chapbook form seems particularly congenial to him."

Please note that Lute Variations is now out of print

Hazel Frew's pamphlet Clockwork Scorpion is praised in the latest issue of Poetry Scotland as "very good work from a good newcomer. Recommended." It is also reviewed in the new issue of Sphinx where its highly original subject matter and imaginative dexterity is praised. "I like the control and economy in this writing," says reviewer Eleanor Livingstone, "and Frew's confidence with structure gives the poems a lot of liveliness."


Peter Dale's Eight by Five was reviewed by Sarah Crown in The Guardian on 24th March. She praised the collection's "mordant humour" finding the poems "pungent and amusing". In these "rich and textured poems...the humble epigram is elevated, illuminated; transformed".


Nicholas Murray, founder of Rack Press, is interviewed about the Press in the latest issue of Sphinx magazine (Issue 6, Spring 2007: www.happenstancepress.com)

If you would like to learn more visit the Rack Press website.