PORTS

32pp pamphlet published by SPAM Press, 2019.

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> ‘In PORTS, Calum Rodger moulds together video games and well-known poems of the 20th century, and these hybrid creatures are fond, funny, extraordinary explorations into popular culture. At once known and strange, hilarious and serious, sweet and dark, these poems will make your thumbs itch for a joy-pad and your mouth long for plums. This pamphlet combines concrete form and lyrical moments to make something so addictive, it beckons you on for one more poem.’
   Alice Tarbuck, author of Grid (Sad Press)

Teaser poems:

Poem facsimile. Slim sans serif font. Title is 'Poetry'. One stanza of three lines and four of two lines each; the first, third and fifth stanzas are indented. The text reads: 'press x to grasp / hold circle to dilate / tap square to rise // you are among phenomena / you are important // toggle L2 to understand / press L1 to admire // play with perfect contempt / are you beyond all this fiddle // hold R2 to imagine a garden / tap triangle to generate toads'. The x, circle, square and triangle are stylised to resemble the icons of PlayStation buttons.

Poem facsimile. Slim sans serif font. Title is 'Port'. One stanza of eleven lines. The text reads: 'PICK UP jar / WALK TO Tennessee / WALK TO hill / LOOK AT slovenly wilderness / USE jar with hill / LOOK AT wilderness, no longer wild / LOOK AT jar / GIVE bird to everything else in Tennessee / GIVE bush to everything else in Tennessee / GIVE dominion everywhere to jar / LOOK AT jar'.

Poem facsimile. Slim sans serif font. Title is 'Having a Coke with Frank O'Hara'. Twenty-five lines proceeding in units of five; the first line of each unit is left-indented, and the following four lines of each unit create an upturned square as if corresponding to the four buttons of the PlayStation controller. The text reads: 'you are having a coke with Frank O'Hara / triangle sip Coke / square gulp Coke / circle play with straw / x smile at Frank / he says he got drunk in Barcelona / triangle listen intently square play with straw circle look at his mouth / x look at his eyes / oh god he remembers how much you love yoghurt / triangle sparkle eyes / square smile / circle you can't help it / x smile more / here he goes talking about art again / triangle laugh / square he's laughing / circle look at his mouth / x look at his eyes / may you never be cheated of this marvellous experience / triangle sip Coke / square play with straw / circle look at Frank / x lean in to kiss'. The triangles, squares, circles and x's are stylised to resemble the icons of PlayStation buttons.

Poem facsimile. Slim sans serif font. Title is 'Wave'. Six stanzas of two lines each work through the page diagonally from top-left to bottom-right. The text reads: 'press X to wave / press square to drown // press square to drown / press x to wave // press square to wave / press x to drown // press x to drown // press square to wave // press x to wave / press square to wave // press square to drown / press x to drown'. The x's and squares are stylised to resemble the icons of PlayStation buttons.


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