Title: The Works
Author: Pam Ayres
Page Count/Review Word Count: 256
This is a cracking little collection of Pam Ayres’ poetry, and it comes with the added little bonus that she introduces a bunch of the poems with a little mini essay that tells you how they came about. In a weird way, it reminded me of Isaac Asimov, because he used to do something similar.
Ayres’ poetry isn’t the normal kind of poetry that I like, because I’m not really one for rhyming verse. With that said, there’s a lot of humour to what she does and so it’s pretty hard to read her work without cracking an occasional smile.
I don’t think this is the kind of poetry that’s going to make you think new things or help you to broaden your mind, but that’s not what it aims to be. It’s more a form of escapism, despite the fact that it focuses on a bunch of more mundane subject matters. That kind of makes it like a snapshot in time, because a lot of the stuff that Ayres wrote about already feels dated and like an echo from a former life.
I like the way that Ayres is able to be so autobiographical in her work without it feeling gratuitous or like she’s only writing to exercise her demons. Instead, she’s busy just reflecting the life that she’s lived and the things that she’s seen. I particularly liked a piece about suffering battery hens.