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By Patrick Woodcock

Like an embedded journalist, Patrick Woodcock writes his poetry from front traces of expertise. From towns reeling from the trauma of siege war to the stifling warmth and politics of the Arabian Peninsula to the darkest corners of the South American rain wooded area, Woodcock's poems undergo witness to an international that's both fast and remote... and much extra complicated than we regularly think. In his new booklet consistently Die ahead of You mom, Woodcock takes us around the world -- recording no matter what he can. Like a photographer utilizing the changeable lenses of photo and idiom, he transforms all that he sees right into a searing remark on human mess ups either private and non-private, these of our societies, our politics and our religions, in addition to his personal disasters as a son.

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Always die before your mother

Like an embedded journalist, Patrick Woodcock writes his poetry from front traces of expertise. From towns reeling from the trauma of siege struggle to the stifling warmth and politics of the Arabian Peninsula to the darkest corners of the South American rain wooded area, Woodcock's poems endure witness to an international that's both rapid and distant.

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Sample text

I ordered rum and cigarettes and now sit watching an old woman struggling with a flower arrangement twice as big as she is. Two hours ago, I was in that same cemetery taking photographs of graves and burnt crosses piled upon each other, like those who couldn’t find shelter in Armero. I saw the bleakest of portraits — humidity can twist any smile into a scowl. I found the rain -stained letters of the living taped to headstones. They were too faded, and my Spanish too limited, for me to read. Right now, I am thinking about the children I met this morning.

Take that one — he smokes like a hairdresser — eyes full of sunshine and all that teaboy scurry. And him — drunk and reeling like a whirlpool . . he could silhouette even the finest Catholic vision. Okay, I have been drinking, but I still think their horns sound like a harpsichord shitting a cat. 59 LOS MAGNIFICOS I am watching six men create fire: in a perfect arc they lob halved leaden balls at two triangles of gunpowder. I sit below a corrugated metal roof that is being battered by rain — it is leaking in three places — always on us.

51 THE TOILET SONG There is no wall to hide your junk, no ceiling and no seat. Just a trough and cigarettes sunk and urine at your feet. The smell is like the tongue of a corpse dragged damp across your face. Like being slapped by their great lord, then buggered by His grace. It is dark — a black nightmare dark, her father’s chasing me. Simply because I left this mark, seed and apostasy. It is white, a cold padded white, I’m shackled to my bed. ” But powder formed and powder shaped can shock me from my gloom.

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