The Carpet Rake by Charles Bisley


The Carpet Rake by Charles Bisley


Illustrated by Michael Haggie, Designed by Dan Bisley.

Set in the New Zealand of the 1960s and 1970s, it evokes a vanished world and a colourful cast of characters. Its story summits in a new home with all mod cons, in a marital crisis over a wall-to-wall shag pile. The writing was already on the wall for the suburb. The future came to the cul de sac.

The book is a collaboration between writer and former Whanganui resident and teacher Charles Bisley, local artist Michael Haggie, and designer Dan Bisley. Charles and Michael met as part of a group of friends that included Joanna Paul.

Almost 4O years after they met, Michael and Charles decided it was high time to kick up their heels and collaborate on an illustrated book that celebrated the back in the day. 2023 saw the dynamic to and fros of collaboration. The poem, completed the year before, was now enhanced by images, by the configurations and patterns of these and the text, to become a stylish book.

Charles has written several books of poetry, academic papers about children’s learning, as well as numerous children’s plays. He is currently writing a long poem Traverse about catching the Northerner, with a glance at the Best Poets Road Trip poem.

The Carpet Rake is not a shaggy carpet story. Except for one the events and characters in the poem are entirely made up. Yet the social and material world the poem reassembles, strange as it may seem from our vantage point, was once real, and real for the characters assembled there. There is both comedy and pathos in these lives, in asking if they were for real?

Size: Front cover: 180mm x 255mm

Medium: Illustrated Poem

Status: For Sale

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