PHARMAKON is a new collection of poems from the critically acclaimed author, Derek Beaven, whose novels include IF THE INVADER COMES, ACTS OF MUTINY & NEWTON'S NIECE. 'This collection contains forty-three poems in various formats. Some are substantial or consist of narrative sequences. Others are brief and poignant. There are also many touches of humour. The title PHARMAKON suggests the need for a cure - it's the original Greek word for a remedy (as in pharmacy, pharmaceutical, of course), and the title poem plays with the idea that poetry is often supposed to be "good for us". The poems all spring from a period some years ago when I was unwell and in need of a remedy, but they have nothing to do with drugs or medication - because I didn't take any. They represent, instead, a journey through a poetic landscape where the prospect of healing hangs just out of reach--almost like the grail. On the way, we meet a variety of figures: the lady projectionist, the modern-day knight encased in the "wrap-round" steel of his car, the cyclist caught by an ambiguous angel, the tragic dog boy, or the patient who invents an alternative body in order to breathe... These are poems that experiment with the possibilities both of subject matter and of form. If some appear dark, they offer, in the end, a message of hope.'
Used availability for Derek Beaven's Pharmakon
March 2015 : USA Paperback
January 2015 : Canada, UK Kindle edition