Gas Deities comes from a quest for meaning that negates the big ticket items of ego, intellectual fashion and salvation, for the generative joys of doubt. Using dramatic monologues and the slipperiness of the lyrical “I” Wright takes us on a journey through suburban Australia, with the odd overseas excursion. These poems find magic in the ordinary, and relish the creativity of erring while mining the foibles of certainty and pretension.
‘Ed Wright’s new collection is hugely entertaining and full of his kind of mordant humour. Based closely on voiced monologues and down-to-earth characters, the longer poems are fictions in the vernacular, teasing and knockabout in mood, and reminding me at times of the late Bruce Dawe. They develop through a kind of compassionate irreverence. At first I had thought the poems were funny, then serious, then philosophical, and then I realised they were all three.’
“The poems of Ed Wright’s third poetry collection, Gas Deities, are as vivid as Howard Arkley’s well-known paintings of mid-century Australian houses, and like Arkley’s paintings, they take as their subject a distinctly Australian suburbia…a collection of poems so preoccupied with the burden of dreams and aspirations, and the breakdown or destruction of the structures of meaning in which these dreams attempt to play out.…Gas Deities is a deeply satisfying collection, not only for its vivid and memorable poems, but for the facetted ways in which the poems return to the book’s central themes, with an incisive and ironic eye, but also at times with poignancy.”
THOMAS SULLIVAN, Plumwood Mountain Journal
“Ed Wright centres his third collection, Gas Deities, around a sequence of satirical narrative poems taking aim at familiar targets…Conveying transactional encounters in compressed vignettes, often leveraging humour with slant rhyme…Wright’s volume might seem to verge light verse, yet there is a melancholy that makes poems difficult to confidently categorise”
SARAH HOLLAND-BATT, The Australian/ Fishing for Lighting