Cliff Fell

Beauty of the Badlands

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The poems in the first part of Beauty of the Badlands, Cliff Fell's remarkable new collection, are located in the poet’'s home on the marginal clays and farms of the Moutere hills, the ‘badlands’ that rise west of the village of Brightwater, where Ernest Rutherford was born. But intimations of other places— – and of the perilous years since 9/11 – are immediately felt, as the collection moves beyond its familiar territory on a road trip through the mountains and deserts and secret sites of the US southwest.

Taking his bearings from masters of poem and song, both ancient and modern, Cliff Fell conceives of his American quest with characteristic irony as a visit to the underworld.

Cliff Fell was born in London in 1955. He travelled, lived and worked in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Europe, before coming to New Zealand in 1997. His first book, The Adulterer's Bible, was published in 2003 and won the 2004 NZSA Jessie Mackay Best First Book Award.

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