Paul Archer is a poet and translator of Japanese and Spanish poetry. He graduated from the University of Oxford with a degree in English Language and Literature and has lived in London, Tokyo and Mallorca.
Review of Dynamo Memory
ingenu/e magazine - winter 18/19
Behind its quietly unassuming dark blue cover there lies a small gem of unexpected depth and resonance.
Paul Archer was born and brought up in East Grinstead, Sussex, read English Language and Literature at the University of Oxford and is a translator of Spanish and Japanese poetry.
In Dynamo Memory, a collection of 34 poems driven by the power of memory, Archer brings to life childhood recollections of his native Sussex, 'Goring-by-Sea' and 'The First Eleven' are particular favourites, and evocative impressions of later years in Japan and Spain, like 'Lemons on the Lemon Trees' and 'Namari Spa'. He ranges from the engagingly humorous 'Stunned by Shakespeare' to the sublimely dark 'Callers' and 'Ars Moriendi' and the glibly chilling 'Keep off the Grass'. The satirically topical 'The Poems Project' will resonate with anyone who has encountered bewildering corporate speak.
I usually like to sample poetry, picking out a couple of poems at a time, like intensely rich chocolate one can have too much at once. But I was hooked on Dynamo Memory, captivated by its eloquence, moved by its poignancy and couldn't put it down till I'd read it from cover to cover.
Dynamo Memory is a beautiful snapshot of this poet's skill to distil experience and evoke emotions in a few lines. If you, like me, are a lover of poetry this is a must read. If you are generally ambivalent about poetry, you should try it, you just might be surprised.