It's official, according to the Guardian: Jane Yeh's first book of poetry Marabou has made the shortlist in the poetry category for the Whitbread Book Awards. Jane's poems are outrageously good (here's her website, where you can see for yourself), I am crossing my fingers she will win this (Jane deserves the greatest success in the world, of course she is one of my favorite people ever but I swear this is an objective judgment... anyway I am delighted that she's shortlisted).
Here's one poem I particularly like, for a treat. I hope you will find it as surprising and appealingly twisty-turny as I do & order her book. It's great.
THE ONLY CONFIRMED CAST MEMBER IS OOK THE OWL, WHO HAS BEEN TAPPED TO PLAY THE SNOWY WHITE OWL WHO DELIVERS MAIL FOR HARRY
— article on preproduction for the first Harry Potter film, New York Post, August 2000
Claw up. Claw down. Cut.
My fine eyes. My fine eyes are— Cut.
I was fluffed and plucked, like a beauty-pageant winner,
Between takes. Like a news presenter.
Could I be a news presenter?
Rider: 5 rashers bacon. 8-oz. tin mixed nuts.
2 lbs. rabbit fillets. Assorted drupes.
Between takes, I did leg-lifts in my trailer.
If asked what is your most treasured possession, I would say
The woolly toy Tracey, my personal trainer, gave me when young.
I learnt to spy it from afar, then swoop down and seize,
But only on cue. Mr Sheep goes everywhere with me now.
If I could wake up having gained one ability,
It would be the capacity for more facial expression.
It is so tedious to have one’s beak set in a permanent frown.
My greatest talent is impersonation—
To simulate a person’s idea of an owl.
Sadly, I owe my success to typecasting.
My greatest fear is to be found wanting.
At the premiere party, the women were not very clothed.
It is of advantage to be clad always in feathers.
I allowed fake friends to pet me.
My picture was taken several times with the boy.
I enjoy parties because otherwise I see only Tracey.
Afterwards, you wonder what the glitter was for.