Lyre is a sonic, sculptural cornucopia of new and startling forms. Stuart Cooke proposes that all kinds of life—animal, plant and otherwise—have their own modes of expression, each of which can each be translated into a different kind of poetry. Ranging across Australasian oceans, coastlines, rainforests, savannahs and deserts, and similarly wide-ranging in its approach to form and lineation, Lyre asks what happens when poems make contact with non-human worlds; in so doing, it welcomes whole new worlds to poetry.
Inspired in part by books like Les Murray’s Translations from the Natural World and Barry Hill & John Wolseley’s Lines for Birds, Lyre is the result of many years of research into a selection of Australasian flora, fauna and landforms. The collection asks what happens to poetry when it encounters more-than- human life.
“Drawing on the deepest resources of antipodean poetics, Lyre hymns the created world in all its prodigious diversity. It is funny, reverent, full of curious facts, and crazily ambitious. A triumph.” - JM Coetzee