Lily Holloway

AUP New Poets 8

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“Full of the ordinarily extraordinary events that make up everyday life, Holloway’s collection has a darker undercurrent to it than is immediately apparent. Her body ‘a monument / to never / forgetting’, her poems, too, are shaped by a past that makes itself known to the reader through shadows, repetitions, metaphors, questions, erasures, echoes and a controlled use of form.”

— from the foreword by Anna Jackson

“The first section is from prolific writer and editor Lily Holloway. Holloway has been a force in Aotearoa poetry in the last couple of years, publishing widely and co-founding Aotearoa’s first queer poetry journal, eel magazine (the first issue has just been released—worth noting here for its depth and breadth). Holloway’s section in this book, ‘a child in the alcove’, gives us insight into the little things that move them: Velma and the mystery machine, Sistema lunch boxes, starfish and crustaceans. These little pockets of refuge amidst a storm of heavy subject matter provide a deft balance of the light and the heavy.

In their early twenties, Holloway writes like someone beyond their years. A lot of the work inspects and reflects on temporality, on what it means to rewind or return or repeat.”

review by Jordan Hamel for Landfall

Holloway’s “selection, ‘a child in that alcove,’ really showcases her versatility and ambition as a writer, with really thorny, evocative lines and images that stay with you.”

“Lily tackles the extraordinary in the everyday and really emphasises the passing of time and how that can have an effect on how we reconcile events in our personal pasts, and the loops that we can get stuck in.”

review by Chris Tse for RNZ

Holloway’s “aural and linguistic deftness, the sweet measure of surprise, the variegated forms, the connecting undercurrents, the honey, the bitterness. Her poems run on the rewarding premise that poems don’t need the full explanation, that tactile detail and deft juxtapositions can unmask love, desire, razor edges, self-exposure. Pocket narratives are equally sublime.”

review by Paula Green for Kete Books

“Three poets, three distinctive voices sampling on a wide – perhaps endless – continuum of topoi and technique. After all, ‘There is no end to possible meanings’ (from Holloway’s Is any of this relevant? pp. 17–19).”

review by Vaughan Rapatahana

Holloway’s “voice is mature and contemplative, her collection ‘a child in that alcove’ contains some beautiful compositions of the English language.”

review by Chris Reed for NZ Booklovers

“Holloway brings moments from her daily life and expresses them to her readers. Her poetry is filled with excitement, with dread, with questions and with memories of people from her life. […] Her writing touched my soul and left me with joy but also a missing tooth.”

review by Stuti Patel (fifteen years old!) for Read NZ

Holloway “uses a variety of styles: erasures, tabular material, wide variation in spacing. Each poem stands separate, using visual and verbal effects to make her points, but the variation itself holds the individual pieces together.”

review by Mary Cresswell for Takahē