A sequence and selection of immediate responses to what happens on the street, in offices, parties, riding a bus, the train, passing a storefront, overhearing a conversation, sending and receiving a text, SEZ/Everything Speakswas initially written on an iPhone and sent as impressions to the poet’s wife, who sometimes prompted them. ‘I began this manuscript in this way,’ Marcus Smith says, ‘for immediacy, for catching life before it runs away to the next block, for recording responses before they disappear into another lost moment.'
Andy Croft, poet and Smokestack Books publisher, calls SEZ, 'A great idea beautifully done.'
Keith Jafrate of The Word Hoard says: 'Marcus Smith uses our ambivalent contemporary concepts of ’mobility’ and ‘connection’ to quietly subvert the city, revealing within its apparent fixity a wealth of what might be called free associations, dense intersections of thought and thing in which, quite literally, everything speaks. His careful, fluid and seemingly simple poems will change how you see the urban environment, enriching it as they do with huge potential, and revealing unseen routes of thought and feeling through and in the concrete that run counter to any known map.'
John Snelling of London Grip says, ‘Marcus Smith shows us how to write good poetry by concatenating different modes of meaning… to a contemplation of the richness of our moment to moment experience and to a perception that much that seems contradictory is only apparently so.’
Richard Jackson, poet and critic, says Marcus Smith’s ‘text’ poems are rich in their understanding of the increasing importance of our reliance on electronics and the ghost presences that haunt us… and where we are here in SEZ is in the midst of a fascinating world.'
Marcus Smith’s work has appeared widely in UK, US and European journals including
Acumen, Ambit, Envoi, The Rialto, The North, Standand Popshot. He has won Plough and Poetry on the Lake Prizes and been a Cinnamon Press Book Award finalist. His chapbook New York à Go-goappears on Recours au poème.