When I read Rose Hunter’s poetry I am immersed in the flow of her music, as if the conscious world is an intensely coloured envelope of experience: wonder mixed with something dark and unpredictable. Anyone who can say “a cantaloupe is the fruit equivalent of a lobster” has my full attention.
—Angela Gardner, Editor, foam:e
Rose Hunter’s poems decentre the speaking subject, shifting position from the absurd to the oneiric, from the colourful streets of Mexico to Brisbane. Part-diary, part-confession, glass is a delicate and resilient collection, a hybrid language answering poetry’s questions of memory and desire.
—Michelle Cahill, Editor, Mascara Literary Review.
descansos, dancing girl press, 2015.
This is a chapbook of poetry. (Thirty pages including front matter.)
“Although her stated sensibility is Buddhist, reading the collection reminded me of that Daoist story from Chuang Tzu of the ‘Dexterous Butcher’ whose sensitivity to the spaces between joints kept his knife blade sharp through thousands of uses. Hunter also has a deftness in the breaking of her lines: a sensitivity to the spaces of language and the strangeness and meaning that are added to story-telling when attention, precision and craft come together.
… The subject is serious and the gaze unflinching and honest. Her ability to make language and image strange, ensures we look deeper. It does what good poetry does and tells us about ‘the moment, what is in front/ of us now’ (yogi).”
—Angela Gardner, foam:e. (full review)
“Memory can never let go, but memory leads, paradoxically, to release. Memories, then, are themselves descansos. Hunter’s chapbook is an unflinching examination of grief, but grief without the self-pity …”
—The Potomac. (full review)
“‘dust’ reads as though it has been translated from the lyrical Spanish of a South American surrealist, such as César Vallejo. It seems to have antecedents far removed from Australian influences; while surreal in character, ‘dust’ also has the intensely personal and expressive quality of the New York School poets, such as John Ashbery. The poem describes a car accident, or more correctly, the relationship of the poet to a car accident, or better still, the kaleidoscopic emotional entanglement of the poet in relation to a car accident. This poem impresses, because it is so ambitious. Rose Hunter is performing on a high wire in this poem, and despite the risks, she does not fall. In many ways, ‘dust’ is Australian poetry in exile.”
You As Poetry, Texture Press, 2013.
“The uncountable layers of our 21st-century identity – in You As Poetry, Rose Hunter makes them visible in a provoking and compassionate collage of the human condition.”
—Dorothee Lang, author of Worlds Apart (Folded Word Press).
“There’s a little hint of Under the Volcano here, in that it’s in Mexico, mostly, and there are some DTs and the like. But minus the violence, little vignettes of daily life viewed extraordinarily. Drily: ‘I saw us there; on the laundry / I was drinking roof / and you were hanging cocktails.’ Dreamlike disjunctions, sequences of images and visions, just being at home in the world of a Chagall painting set in bohemians in Mexico life.”
—Don Riggs, author of Bilateral Asymmetry (Texture Press).
“You As Poetry by Rose Hunter is a polyphonic and sensitive book that invites many readings. Hunter’s poetry is not one tone, and joy is hidden in pages that deal with a serious subject. You should read this book. You will be overwhelmed with how simple turns of phrase can invite layers of elucidation.”
—Andrew Keller, Painted Bride Quarterly.
“Relying on image and an almost stream of consciousness intuition, Ms. Hunter’s poems employ subtlety, wordplay (pale/pail) and quotes from diverse sources (the turkey who lives on the hill from ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’). Many contain word or short phrases in Spanish, either translatable through context or explained in a following line. . . . Written while Ms. Hunter resided in Puerto Vallarta, each poem views the beloved as a disparate object/creature/place. Not a book to be easily digested, each poem, with its strong use of metaphor and simile, unfolds slowly, revealing a bit more with each subsequent reading. Take time to savor these poems.”
—Ann Howells, editor, Illya’s Honey.
[four paths], Texture Press, 2012.
“Rose Hunter’s [four paths] concerns itself as much with the sights of its poems as it does with the sounds of these fractured articulations. The reader may recognize an ending in the trail of intimate intonations, but exotic possibility is brought sublimely to the fore – to the Mexican fringe where the unexpected and the unprecedented await. Hunter’s path weaves precariously, yet dazzles in its emotional and physical presence and allures in even the lushest of sensory environments.”
—Erin McKnight, publisher, Queen’s Ferry Press.
“Rose Hunter creates energizing convergences of form and language and then she pulls them apart again, the white space admitting space for changing directions, perception, and hearts. Her words take shape as breath, imagination, and life.”
—Susan Smith Nash, author of The Adventures of Tinguely Querer (Texture Press).
“When exploring the structures and contours of relationships, Hunter allows poetic form to tell us much (if not most) about her understanding of what we’re up against when trying to build human connections. And she commands the reader’s attention in her approach. What’s more, for a poetic consciousness as sensitive and as committed and, at times, as neurotic as Hunter’s, in addition to addressing categorical obstacles (culture, language, gender, & etc.), she sits with the more unexpected and perhaps subtler degrees of difference — varying tastes for hot sauce, for example! — each of which, as Hunter demonstrates, has the potential to suggest additional chasms of difference that our efforts for connection must cross. And yet.”
—Geffrey Davis, Toe Good Poetry.
to the river, Artistically Declined Press, 2010. * out of print.
“The poems in Rose Hunter’s debut collection read like a travelogue in verse. Each line is an adventure in a new locale, each poem a revelation that sticks with you as each new poem begins.”
“A stunning collection, to the river is more than one woman’s journey through life: it’s a series of quests, each presenting its own challenges, and the question is: Will she survive the next? Read these poems and find out.”
—Molly Gaudry, author We Take Me Apart (Mud Lucious Press/Ampersand Books).
“Hunter’s skills are evident from the very first line and continue through to the last page. Her poems represent a map for the landscape of our everyday actions.”
—Patrick Trotti, JMWW.
“Rose Hunter’s bristling travelogue is a delight. Her poems are dynamic, authentic vignettes that contain elements of cinema, still photography and stage. Her selection of vivid detail is unerring, her ear for dialogue impeccable – in just a few deft strokes she creates a vivid, concrete urban world (these are definitely urban tales) anywhere in the world – anywhere: Sydney, Acapulco, Vienna, San Francisco or one of a dozen other cities.”
—Nic Sebastian, Untitled Country.
“With simple language, Hunter explores misconceived perceptions within personal relationships brought forth by the boundaries and guises we create for ourselves, our feelings. … Presenting insights that challenge without a heavy, preachy hand is what good poetry is supposed to do, and this collection does exactly that. It’s a kinetic observation of human ugliness and beauty, of being caught somewhere in the middle, kicking, longing, sometimes bleeding. To the River is a journey well worth the price of admission, and you don’t even need to leave the warmth and comfort of your blankets to begin.”
—Mel Bosworth, author of Freight (Folded Word Press), and Grease Stains, Kismet, and Maternal Wisdom (KUBOA Press).
And Ben Tanzer’s lovely-and-impossible-to-pull-out-a-quote-from, review/response piece.