Alex Skovron was
born in Poland, lived briefly in Israel, and emigrated to Australia in
1958. His family settled in Sydney, where he grew up and completed his
Skovron's poetry has been published widely and three collections have appeared to date:
He has been a winner
of the Wesley Michel Wright Prize for Poetry (1983), the John Shaw Neilson
Poetry Award (1995 and 2001), the Manuel Gelman Memorial Prize for Literature
(1997), and the Kyneton Literature Festival Poetry Prize (2002).
1988 by Melbourne University Press
Alex Skovron's first collection of poetry presents a diverse poetic landscape in which some of the major preoccupations of our time are explored. Central to these is the journey towards self-knowledge. It is a journey that moves through the discovery, questioning, perhaps even judgment, of history's lessons, both personal and collective; through relationships, observed, intimate and estranged; through music, art and the creative impulse; through faith. The Old World, with its complex legacy, is a recurring concern.
Each of the three sections opens and concludes with a longer poem. Within and across the sections, themes overlap and echo, contend and mesh. By means of this framework, epitomized in the structure of the title poem, the circle of experience is drawn together. But the circle is never closed; like the pattern in the glass of a kaleidoscope, it remains restless, open, and ready always to rearrange itself into new patterns and possibilities.
"... a poet
of great resourcefulness and erudition, one who brings to Australian poetry
an originally European sensibility together with an impressive panache
in the music he is able to make from English vowels and consonants."
by Hale & Iremonger in association with Golvan Arts (paperback, 88
have not previously read this scrupulous and inventive poet will now have
to do so, and those who already admire his work will find new depths and
lustres in these fresh explorations into life, art, and the surprising
exchanges to which they are subject ... Skovron's poetic voice - formal
without undue formality, serious yet always open to wit and humour - has
been recognized from the start as clear and companionable. With Sleeve
Notes it becomes authoritative."
by Five Islands Press (paperback, 118 pp., $13.95).
is a collection of 100 poems in a ten-line form for which Alex Skovron
has coined the name 'sonnetina'. These sonnetinas speak in many voices,
though certain motifs recur and intersect. Rhythm and colour shift from
page to page; rhyme-schemes vary, or vanish; fact and invention jostle
each other as the form is explored from many angles.
Although each sonnetina
is self-contained, the book can be read as an unfolding journey through
the realms and layers of experience. It can also be entered obliquely,
along paths that subvert the printed sequence but uncover unexpected echoes
and links; or dipped into at random, with individual poems rotated under
poems singly, in their complete sequence or in their thematically-arranged
groupings, the reader is rewarded by their extraordinary range of intellectual
rigour, emotional experience and subject matter, as well as the satisfaction
of encountering extremely accomplished poetry."
these are flawless poems: economical, and beautifully put together
City is an impressive and masterly book."
books may be ordered through Jewish Australia Online