Alex Houen is author of the poetry chapbook Rouge States (Oystercatcher, 2014), and co-author (with Geoff Gilbert) of another chapbook, Hold! West (Eyewear, 2016). He is co-editor of the online poetry magazine Blackbox Manifold and teaches modern literature in the Faculty of English, and Pembroke College, University of Cambridge.
The long wait for a first full-length collection from Alex Houen has been more than worth it, it’s been essential to the making of something stirring, bothering, and confrontational, built with artisanal skill. This is not a work stuck in imperialist English, it reaches out, giving the ‘sacred’ materials of Western thought an ironic workover — sometimes with overt levity, sometimes with self-mockery, sometimes with an intensity of observation that floors you. Houen works with that tangential ‘voice’ that claims no ownership, no possessing. A tone book of word action!— John Kinsella