About the book
Birth Plan, LK Holt's fourth full-length collection is a generous, sharp-edged, technically masterful and expansive collection from one of Australia's foremost female poets. These poems are transformative, fiercely feminist, unrelenting in their clarity, and display a rare mastery of the musicality of language. Exploring the realities of mothering and loving in the late Anthropocene, Holt's work is rigorous in its exploration and evocation of psychological truths and half-truths. Fearless and darkly humorous, these are poems that turn on a phoneme and give full life and song to the shimmering uncertainties and hard realities of selfhood.
About the author
LK Holt lives in Melbourne, Australia. Her previous full-length collections are 'Man Wolf Man' (2007), 'Patience, Mutiny' (2010), and 'Keeps' (2014). She is a recipient of the Kenneth Slessor Prize and the Grace Leven Prize, and has been longlisted for the Literature Society Gold Medal.
Linguistically supple and engaged in experimentation with language, Holt's poems take the reader to locations as diverse as the Arapiles, Kangaroo Island and Barcelona. While apparently encompassing such experiences as childbirth, marriage, raising children and the death of a parent, Holt's collection explores too the curiosities of the natural world, juxtaposing human culture, in the form of music and art, with animals and birds. The poems connect the present with a long history of western artistic production. They place art and music in proximity with physical experiences, while also interrogating life with technology: the ubiquity of mobile electronic devices and Siri. Formally ranging from prose poems to sonnets that challenge readers' expectations about rhyme and rhythm, the poems in this volume contain arresting imagery. While titles are as diverse as 'She was Told to Have a Birth Plan' and 'I Don't Know', each poem, with its extended metaphors and precise yet original language, drives towards a new and more complete view of contemporary life, and its connections to the past.