Fremantle Press, 1987, 1993
Awards and Shortlistings
1987 British Airways / Commonwealth Poetry Book Prize (Overall Winner) – London
1988 Western Australian Literary Award for Poetry
1987 The Age Book of the Year – only Poetry title shortlisted (now the Poetry Prize)
1987 The Age / Poetry Book Recommendation
Sky Poems, Philip Salom’s third collection of poetry, opens out onto a new world – the Sky world – where reality is constantly being forged from the memories and experiences of its protagonists. Anything thought of in this world, anything desired, is instantly made real.
Here are people and their patterns of mind caught in poems of great intensity, eroticism and power. Intellectually, emotionally, and linguistically adventurous, this is poetry that challenges yet remains accessible; it is forthright, passionate and deeply felt, yet disciplined and exceptionally well-crafted. It evidences a poet approaching the full pitch of his imagination and art.
Praise for Sky Poems
Some of the most exciting and brilliantly original work we have read.
Judges Comment: Commonwealth Poetry Prize, London
This is big poetry, a big book, with large concerns. It demonstrates his increasing powers, his enormous verve and awareness. The vast scope of the poems, the scale of the poet’s plan, his passionate yet disciplined language, the people who inhabit his world of heightened reality, are unforgettable. Each poem is a fresh and startling adventure. Read this book, it’s stunning.
Barbara Giles, ABR
Philip Salom’s third book, Sky Poems, is an impressive and beautifully produced collection. Its surrealism works as surrealism is supposed to, jolting us out of complacencies of common sense, habit and narrow mindedness. It is a book of formidable talent and imaginative richness.
Philip Neilsen, The Age
There has been nothing quite like these poems in Australian poetry before. Sky Poems is a brilliant suite of poems … it is surrealism with an especially deft way of handling the ‘real’. Sky Poems should be read by anyone who cares for scope and scale in poetry, and enjoys language at full stretch.
Peter Porter (back cover of Sky Poems)
Many of the poems in Sky Poems run off the road of reading into the bush of excited imagination. But the excitement is there and the imagination is there. Salom brings us the evidence of a new maturity in our culture; in his Sky Poems the multiple cultures find their nascent sensibility; the bush-dada is coming!
Keith Russell, Quadrant