Pub date: March 17, 2015
The Gun That Starts the Race, alternately like a David Lynch film or an episode of The Simpsons, finds the uncanny in the everyday. The poems surprise you, make you laugh and weep (sometimes simultaneously) with recognition at the fleeting spark of our existence. Many of the poems are like archaeological sites between the sturm und drang of people’s fleeting dramas, exploring in language playgrounds recently vacated, graves recently inhabited, basements and dark corners where life and death go on without us.
From free-verse lyrics to masterful sonnets, Norman’s poems weld form and content together organically. They neither baffle nor condescend. Blending an effortless style, surprising metaphors, and striking images with a restless, roving intellect, they try to get to the bottom of things, while never satisfied that there is no false bottom. Here, Bolsheviks play tennis with Marxist rules; crows, maggots, and spiders go about their business, oblivious to our sufferings; and the Mole Men of Zug break into song.
In The Gun That Starts the Race, Peter Norman gives us a world that lives and breathes and endures, of which we are only a temporary part.
“Peter Norman’s The Gun That Starts the Race is sensually evocative and rich in imagery. Many of the poems bounce, like a stone skipping across the water’s surface.” – Scene
The Gun That Starts the Race