The Bond
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The Bond

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The Bond was a winner in the 2010 Poetry Business Book & Pamphlet Competition, judged by Simon Armitage, and shortlisted for the 2011 Michael Marks Award.

'Nostalgic, but not sentimental or wistful, the poems have a real sense of the here and now. They strike home.' Simon Armitage


'Maitreyabandhu’s writing is tactile, sensual, and often elegiac in tone. In poems such as ‘The Dam’, he captures the secrecy and excitement of the lovers who ‘found a fallen willow’ and then ‘lay down on our coats’, whilst simultaneously creating a sense of lost adolescence. This idea runs throughout the collection, whether that be in the form of the secret embraces of poems such as ‘The Dam’ or ‘Sestina’, or in the wish to rediscover a family history at the opening of the collection. In these poems, the poetic voice moves between the reflective and the childlike, as the small objects of a family history become a window onto the past.' — The Stand


'It's the poet's own past that preoccupies him, in particular the events of his childhood and youth. Poems such as 'The Chest of Drawers' and 'Copper Wire' lovingly recreate a world of small pleasures, discoveries and terrors: a polish tin given to the child to hold while his mother gets on with the ironing, a discarded strand of wire wrested from the earth by a father who lets nothing go to waste, the nightmare not quite held at bay by maternal love. Even where adolescent sexuality enters the frame, the vision itself remains essentially childlike, though a more knowing adult perspective is implied in a recurrent questioning of the authenticity of memory.' — Jem Poster, Poetry Review

'The Bond by Maitreyabandhu consists largely of fragments of blank verse autobiography, full of sharply registered sense impressions from which other meanings gradually loosen and lift. More self-conscious notes can occasionally be heard. In “Markings”, for example, the sudden, surprising triumph of an achieved likeness reveals the makings of a poet, although this Promethean fire is lambent flame that plays with characteristic gentleness over a lovingly recollected face: “you were altering / the jaw-line very slightly, with the tip of a filbert brush, when there he was”. The instruments of Maitreyabandhu’s art are as sharp and precise as his father’s tools, of which a piano recital reminds him. In “Uchida from the Choir Stalls” he dignifies his father’s manual precision by comparing it to virtuoso pianism. But he also insists that a simple, resonant rightness is the hallmark of all true art.' — The TLS

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