Praise for HOW TO DO THE GREASED WOMBAT SLIDE
I’m in love all over again with Miller’s hilarity, language, unexpected images, and harrowing encounters with deep, dark reality, its caverns and tunnels illuminated by the headlamp on her hardhat. This poet of wild and precise images takes abstractions and folds them up into a jillion origami frogs to set in a circle around a shimmering pond and kiss, one by one.
—Kathleen Kirk, Prick of the Spindle
I’ve lost all interest in contemporary poetry except for the poems of Pamela Miller, who continues unabashedly to write beautifully and jarringly and murderously, “like a cloud of exuberant perfume.” Her trenchant invention never fails to incite my blood and excite my brain and nerves. Time after time, poem after poem, she just kills it. Her new book How to Do the Greased Wombat Slide has more great lines in it than any book since The Marriage of Heaven and Hell by William Blake. To wit:
To paraphrase Samuel Johnson on the poetry of Alexander Pope, “If this isn’t poetry, then nothing is poetry, dammit.”
- “I’m sick of all these poems / that read like walnuts with mayonnaise inside.”
- “O fie on your edited abandon, you poets!”
- “At school I was voted / Most Likely to Evaporate.”
- “You’re too toxic for my toboggan.”
- “Pay no attention to Death in his inevitable galoshes.”
—Bill Yarrow, author of Blasphemer and The Vig of Love
If you fancy poems that merely “wash life’s windshield,” Pamela Miller’s new book may perplex. But if instead you long for poetry “that makes Gaudí’s towers swoon, / then claw the sky wide open,” then you have found your muse! By turns playful and eviscerating, hilarious and discomfiting, deeply perceptive and wryly discombobulating, How to Do the Greased Wombat Slide is the perfect book for our strange and trying times. Miller’s poems locate and dislocate our mortality, our lust, our fears, our stale sense of reality, with a hobgoblin of new images and keen insight. Beneath their surface pleasures, these poems resonate with the poet’s generous and exuberant delight in our weird and wounded humanity. Bless her!
—Ralph Hamilton, author of Teaching a Man to Unstick His Tail
About the Book
How to Do the Greased Wombat Slide will dance poetry lovers away to places you never knew poems could go. This fifth collection from Chicago poet Pamela Miller (author of Recipe for Disaster and Miss Unthinkable) is a constantly surprising jamboree of surreal situations (“She has teeth inside her teeth inside her teeth”), wildly inventive wordplay (“We’re the muck-it-up bungle-thumbs failure brigade”), and zany humor (“When the going gets tough, the tough yell “FOGHORN!”).Yet as poet Ralph Hamilton (Teaching a Man to Unstick His Tail) says, “Beneath their surface pleasures, these poems resonate with Miller’s generous and exuberant delight in our weird and wounded humanity.”
About the Author
Pamela Miller has been gleefully embroidering the fringes of Chicago’s poetry scene for more than 40 years. She is the author of five other books: Fast Little Shoes (Erie Street Press), Mysterious Coleslaw (Ridgeway Press), Recipe for Disaster and Miss Unthinkable (both from Mayapple Press), and Mr. Mischief (dancing girl press). Her poems have appeared in many print and online journals, including The Paris Review, RHINO, BlazeVOX, Otoliths, Nixes Mate Review, Wicked Alice, The MacGuffin, and the late, great Free Lunch, and in the anthologies New Poetry From the Midwest, How to Read a Poem, The Great American Poetry Show 2, and Circe’s Lament: Anthology of Wild Women Poetry. She has performed her work at readings in Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Detroit, and elsewhere. Ms. Miller has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize either five or six times (she’s lost count). After a frenetic 36-year career slinging content for various public relations, marketing communications, editing, publishing, and freelance writing jobs, she now lives in blissful retirement with her husband, science fiction writer Richard Chwedyk.