Cover Image: Howdie-Skelp


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Member Reviews

a wonderful & imaginative collection! Muldoon is an expert at form and structure. i was often amazed by his ability to play with formal structure. these poems are full of history and humor which i consider a hard feat that few really nail. my favorite poem was "Salonica" which is the perfect example of formal structure blended with humor & history (and the tragedy that accompanies it). 4.5 stars
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My thanks to NetGalley and the publisher Farrar, Straus and Giroux for an advanced copy of this new poetry collection.

According to the publisher's copy that came with this book, the title of this new collection Howdie-Skelp is a slap in the face a midwife gives a newborn. A slap is a great way of describing the effects of reading this new assemblage of works by award-winning Irish poet Paul Muldoon.

The poems in this book run from cows in Vermont, classic poems in a translated form, as rich and as earthy as ever, a remake of The Waste Land and a few sonnets on COVID-19. All show a style and uniqueness that make each one different be it humourous, thoughtful or pessimistic

Muldoon uses pop culture alot, movie titles appear and plots are told and shared. Classic literature of course pop up, but also popular music. One poem The Pangolin, or Vasty, for Paul Simon, mixes song titles and lyrics throughout the work, which I'm not sure I enjoyed, but I still found intriguing.

Some of the poems are beautiful, some go on for awhile, and I'm not sure where I was left behind. Some like the following snippet 'We drank absinthe with sugar cubes till the road of excess ran alongside an eight-lane Möbius strip.', say more about me then should be told. Since I have read it I can't seem to escape it in my head. 
A more than solid collection from a very powerful poet. Quite a few of the pieces stay with you, making you think when all want is not to.
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Paul Muldoon brings characteristic observations and a talent for words to a new collection of poems, representing time, place, and experience.
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We’re excited for this highly anticipated forthcoming new poetry collection from Paul Muldoon. For those not familiar with Muldoon, we recommend him highly — his writing has a real complexity, but a playfulness and wittiness that all of you will enjoy. “Howdie-Skelp” lives up to Muldoon’s reputation.
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