This is Belgian Chocolate: Manifestations of Poetry
by Philip Meersman

This Is Belgian ChocolateManifestations of Poetry by Philip Meersman

This Is Belgian Chocolate
Manifestations of Poetry
by Philip Meersman

“Might not striving to be free of limiting particulars via a universal communication—shaped by tongues describing a radical openness—be a worthy intention of poets once again? If this is Meersman’s goal, he has both quietly and loudly succeeded.” —Brooklyn Rail

The extraordinary work of concrete and visual poet Philip Meersman is well known in his native Belgium and throughout Western Europe. His work has been described as “overwhelming and wonderful” with a style that permits the concept of an international language, underlying his strong anti-war stance. With THIS IS BELGIAN CHOCOLATE Meersman’s work is at last collected and presented in a gorgeous volume for a wider audience. Visual poems receive typographic treatments reminiscent of the work of Russian constructivist typographer El Lissitzky. With frequent humorous touches, the work flows across the page in a thoroughly enjoyable, original style. Meersman translates sound into verse and verse into sound, creating an incredible experiential form that is a pleasurable, immersive read. As deContrabas Literary Journal notes, “Words are the weapons of the experimental community-minded city dweller, and Meersman’s work shows that the city is a poetic experiment itself; a breeding ground for multilingual interaction.”

This Is Belgian Chocolate
Manifstations of Poetry by Philip Meersman

ISBN: 978-1-941110-01-0 Trade Paperback; ISBN: 978-1-941110-02-7 ebook
152 pages; $15.95
Publication date: Tuesday, November 11, 2014

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Praise for This Is Belgian Chocolate and Philip Meersman

“Philip Meersman exemplifies the best of the new poetry and the new visual poetry. Endlessly inventive, creatively confrontational, eager to transgress—these qualities keep the reader perpetually off balance, which is to say perpetually alive.” —Willard Bohn, author of Reading Visual Poetry

“Startling poems with invaluable insights. Like gems you gather when walking along the shore . . . which have a unique color as long as they are wet.” —Hatto Fischer, philosopher, poet, and coordinator of Poiein kai Prattein and Kids’ Guernica

“The book should get a warning note: ‘reading this book may forever change your view of poetry’. . . Lightning language, wild wordplay and interesting intertextuality. —Yves Joris, poet and literary critic

“Just as Dada broadened our understanding of art, Meersman’s work broadens our under­standing of Dada. Visual poetry, sound poetry, multi-language puns, lots of humor and social concerns converge in This Is Belgian Chocolate to prove, once again, that the revolution of the word and the revolution of the world cannot but come together.” —Mercedes Roffé, poet and translator; author of Carcaj: Vislumbres and La ópera fantasma

“A surreal melange of poetic sketch and journal entries that playfully romp across several surfaces . . . Somewhat like reading [Ken] Kesey if he were Belgian with a glass full of poetry at a coffee house.” —Nico Vassilakis, artist and poet; editor of The Last Vispo Anthology

“Meersman plays with sounds of language and deconstructs the language of individual sounds. Sound and picture are even more than the conventional ‘language.’ They are universal communication. In his work, he stretches, bends, breaks and plays with words, yet word meanings and word images are central in his poetry. Words are the weapons of the experimental community-minded city dweller, and Meersman’s work shows that the city is a poetic experiment itself; a breeding ground for multilingual interaction.” —de Contrabas literary journal

“The verses, and everything else in the book, are graphically strong. The ‘white’ that surrounds the poems and the distribution of words across the paper is signi cant. Twists and turns, moments of silence are clearly marked that way. Additionally, the visual form also supports the contents of the poem. Overwhelming and wonderful.” —Meander Magazine

About Philip Meersman

Philip Meersman

Philip Meersman

Multilingual poet/performer Philip Meersman pushes boundaries of poetry in both written and spoken form, drawing on current affairs, sociopolitical and environmental issues. His poems range from narrative and traditional form, to directives for performance pieces, to concrete studies of sound, individual words and even letters themselves. His work has been performed in more than 11 countries and translated into 13 languages. He is a cofounder of DAstrugistenDA, artiestencollectief JA!, BruSlam, and the president of BAAZ (Belgische Afdeling van de (Internationale) Academia Zaum). Meersman studied archeology and art history and lives in Jette, Belgium.

More information is available on his website

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