In this world of short attention spans the need to move through a narrative at a fast pace has delivered us the Verse Novel. Note - Dorothy Porter's success with books such as The Monkey's Mask. Now comes performance poet and playwright Benito Di Fonzo's "story in the form of a free verse novel in four movements and two tennuously linked appendices."
This free-flowing fear and loathing in Newtown circa 1990s is ostensibly the story
of being dumped for a drug dealing dwarf barman whilst tripping off your nut in the
early hours of a Sunday morning.
However, Di Fonzo's history as a performance writer (he used to co-host Bardflys at The
Friend In Hand) gives his style a Spalding Gray like 'oral' quality that lends the
book an intimate conversational immediacy, keeping the reader hooked, and
allowing Di Fonzo to use the primary plot as a springboard for a series of sub-plots
into everything from junkie flatmates, how to score Rohypnol in Surry Hills,
defeating the 'pissed spins,' and other sordid tales of Bacchanal, without ever
losing the main thread.
The use of a free verse form keeps the story flowing quickly, yet poetry also gives
it that broken scattered sense of the holiday in the psychotropics that our anti-
hero is attempting to survive.
Small Sydney publisher, Independence Jones Guerilla Press, delivers a story for
anyone who's ever taken the wrong drugs at the wrong time in the wrong place,
and been able to do bugger all about it but ride it out. So turn the page, tune on,
and drop in to this Newtownian fable of sex, drugs and poetry.
- Hilton Freebourne 2005
Hilton Freebourne is a published author, poet and a man of the arts.