Richard Reeve

Richard Reeve (b. 1976) is a Warrington-based poet. He has published three books of poetry through Auckland University Press: Dialectic of Mud (2001), The Life and the Dark (2004) and In Continents (2008), and one, The Among, through Maungatua Press in 2008. Until February 2009 he worked as editor for Otago University Press, but has recently returned to university to study Law. He has also had poems included in several previous Best New Zealand Poems collections.

Reeve comments: ‘I wrote the titleless poem that forms the proem to my recent collection In Continents while in a plane over the American desert en route to England from New Zealand. As a proem, it introduces some of the collection’s themes.

The great age of the earth, misdirected or simplistic efforts at deriving human value from its abyssal character, and the questionable role of poetry in apprehending this namelessness, are recurrent issues in my four collections. Reversing historian Karen Armstrong’s formulation on religion, poetry for me is as much a belief as a practice, even if the “eschatology” of modern poetry—the study of final things in our collective destiny as mortals in an immortal world—is less defined than in the axial faiths. This lack of definition reflects the inertia of our secular epoch which, however necessary as an antidote to the false consciousness of religion, remains constrained by its own technological metaphysics.’

Poem: Unheeding any language . . . 

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