The Chalk Gallery Poetry Prize
Brian Fogarty was awarded The Chalk Gallery Poetry Prize 2013 for his poem ‘Everest’
which came third in the Sussex Poets’ Competition Read more
Brian Fogarty’s latest book of ‘symphonic poems’ is a dazzling tour-de-force of writing surely destined to become a true classic of 21st century literature. The five poems cover a range of emotional, psychological and visionary states wrapped in narratives that will grip the reader from beginning to end. The collections comprises the following poems:
Agoraphobia, Book, Hub, Littlehampton and Lemon Jelly.
Accompanying the first edition is a CD of readings by the author of ‘Hub’ and ‘Book’ with original music and sound design by Michael Stewart.
Paperback. 185 pages. £9.99
An Oyster Paperback Original
To discover more about Hub visit www.hubexposed.com
The Greenhouse: Short Stories and Poems
plus two extracts and 12 poems from Brian Fogarty’s Sudan novel Red over Blue.
AN OYSTER PAPERBACK ORIGINAL: UK £9.99/£15.58
‘The Greenhouse’ made its sensational debut in Panurge in 1984. The story of a schoolgirl who comes to puberty in a derelict greenhouse full of flowers all gone wild, caused controversy and critical acclaim.
Elsewhere in the sun-drenched garden her teacher and the rest of the party of children search for Sara. Their coach driver is being driven mad by the sun.
Meanwhile, Sara, amid the steamy peaceful silence of the greenhouse and the beaming masses of flowers, fantasizes her parents’ beautiful friend. In her mind, she conjures him to be with her in the greenhouse….
Long out of print, this lost masterpiece of beauty and suspense is collected here for the first time with some of Brian Fogarty’s earlier and more recent work, including extracts from his great African novel, ‘Red over Blue’ to be published in the summer of 2006.
Fogarty’s characters cling by their nail quicks to the world and think things they shouldn’t, which gives his writing the edged ring of truth, notwithstanding the dreamy landscapes and his quirky, lyrical prose comparable to the fizz of Swarfega running against tomato juice; magnolias knifed onto a canvas in an impasto of pink Germolene. These rude flowers are grotesque parodies of the common-or-garden seed packet.
‘Grips like a thriller….”The Greenhouse” is mesmerizing – so scary, lovely and strange: David Lynch meets Virginia Woolf and Georges Bataille. Reading it I got goosebumps all over.’
Young and lusty you run ahead
and my blood leaps in hot waves
as suddenly you flick up the hemline
of your skirt and before it falls
I glimpse two quivering cream lobes
divided by a skimp of black lace
just below the tramp stamp
in your coccyx.
Call me when I get home,
tell me what colour you’ve got on
and in my wife beater I’ll sweetmouth you
to orgasm from five thousand miles
over the phone.
from ‘Yankee Beach Girl’
After two bungled operations by the evil team of “surgeons” Pinky & Perky at Hurstwood Park, England, for his rare, terminal brain tumour, Brian Fogarty falls into the hands of the wicked, but smugly gormless, twin-setted and pearled London witch Doctor Shortcrass who, for her own murky purposes hoodwinks him into flying 5000 miles on a wild goose chase to Jacksonville, Florida, where he’s further experimented on in the clinic of world wonder Doctor Malyimpropa, a semi talking walrus who, for the next three months, subjects the already deeply traumatised author to high doses of Proton Beam radiotherapy.
Resting up after each day’s ordeal in his loft at Third & Main run by the delightful and enigmatic M.L, he distracts himself as best he can from the pain by writing these 85 poems, some of which he performed at the famous Three Layers Coffee House in the historic Springfield district of Jacksonville.
This is Brian Fogarty writing for his life; once again lumbered with a chronic, life-threatening illness he refuses to turn his face to the wall but instead turns his pain and anguish into truly great art with these amazing poems in an all out final bid to outrun his fate before the tumour (the “moon” in his head) paralyses and destroys him.
This Side Up
He realized this old image of his had been appropriated after
a slight wobble on impact to hold the others up. This kept most
of them right on message until they’d all freshened up their look
for summer, bang on trend with great tomboy styling. He scared
the others up with an arse-over-teakettle whoop-de-do which left
the crux of the matter quivering right there to be expanded.
They drew it towards them on wires until the youngest
of them, wearing surgical gloves for her date with the duke,
smiled gently at the tiny figures imprisoned in the centre
of a translucent sphere while they floated up and disappeared
in the horizon of coloured alphabets.
The world has been turned upside down.
Accordingly, any semblance of traditional logical narrative is constantly disrupted in Brian Fogarty’s new collection of poems by lines and images which appear like irrational fugitives from parallel worlds, and whilst taking us on a dreamlike and often disturbing and disorientating journey, he returns us to our everyday lives refreshed, with a heightened sense of expectation and wonder at possibilities that are by turns playful, joyful, poignant, nostalgic, enigmatic, thrilling, challenging, and menacing.
In all Brian Fogarty’s work, whether his novels, short stories, paintings, or poems – including ‘This Side Up’, his dazzling and provocative new collection, – art is not an arena for the illustration, mere imitation, or logging of apparent reality, but an autonomous, artificial act driven by his innermost, instinctive and unique need to give shape to a profound elemental force of expression.
Nothing much can touch the radiance of a heap
of sunbeams when we have the park
all to ourselves. Magpies could do almost
as good if we pause to look around
at whatever is floated up at the end
of the season.
D’you remember the paper boat
shaped like a hat that bobbed past us
in the gutter that ran down to Kemptown?
Later we found it junked on a traffic island,
its rim filled with our shared hopes and dreams,
and all the intangible stuff that couldn’t
get into a Noah’s ark.
Still, none of this matters much today
for we no longer need to make our own
feelings or amusements and what
we experienced long ago is hidden
in the heart of the dumb teddy
with his chewed-up ear.
(Brian Fogarty, 2013)