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Invisible Ink: Links and Continuities in Douglas Dunn’s Oeuvre


Douglas Dunn published his latest poetry pamphlet, Invisible Ink, in 2011. While it continues familiar themes and motifs that he introduced much earlier in his poetry, it is also a lyrical appendix to The Year’s Afternoon (2000), his last full collection. This essay describes instances and forms of dialogicity between domestic allegiances and large-scale temporalities within his oeuvre while the poems record a growing disengagement from social issues. Dunn’s tone ranges from weary nostalgia to sharp self-irony even as he paints uncompromisingly candid images of increasing existential alienation from the familiar environment which has been his main source of lyrical consolation.