The Shaking City
"Its unfettered creativity and sharp, critical mind work alongside one another to deliver a poetry collection equal parts fascinating, essential, abstract and educational. The insights it provides into the major struggles of our era and the particularly intimate approach it takes in doing so create a truly worthwhile literary experience." - New Welsh Review
“Drake’s work is often playful, almost always highly imaginative (with more than a touch of surrealism) and technically accomplished... [a] welcome intrusions into what might be called the “Sydney/Melbourne/Canberra poetic triangle.”” – Geoff Page, The Weekend Australian
The shaking city of Australian poet Cath Drake’s debut poetry collection is a metaphor for the swiftly changing precarity of modern life within the looming climate and ecological emergency, and the unease of the narrator who is far from home. Tall tales combine with a conversational style, playful humour and a lyrical assurance. The poet is able to work a wide set of diverse spells upon the reader through her adept use of tone, technique, plot and form. She is a welcome new voice for contemporary poetry.
“Cath Drake wants to grasp the world whole. When she looks at the past, it’s with a big rambunctious energy that has implications for the present. These are restless and generous poems, full of the vivid reality of people’s lives. Read them as a guide to staying clear-eyed, combative and caring in unsettled times.” – Philip Gross
“Cath Drake’s poems deftly explore conflict and the future of our changing, imperilled planet – in a poem about climate emergency, the narrator muses wryly ‘sometimes I hold world in one hand, my life / in the other’. This is a collection alive to dilemmas. Her writing is searching, witty and full of compassion, helping us navigate a shifting world.” – Helen Mort
“This joyful, exuberant, wildly imaginative collection exhorts us all to unmoor our minds, to ‘live among the strange and shining.” – Kate Potts
Watch this video of Cath reading her poem 'How I Hold The World In This Emergency':