John Tranter: He’s great. That is all.

IMAGE: The Floor of Heaven (HarperCollins)

The poet John Tranter is a bit of a hero of mine, and recently I have been revisiting his brilliant verse novel The Floor of Heaven.

For those unfamiliar with the work, I cannot recommend it enough.  A clusterbomb of narrative play and a musing upon the glistening miasma of high and low art, it is a work of striking depth and genuinely dizzying fun.

…And yes, I said ‘glistening miasma’.  I’m comfortable with that.

While I would definitely recommend buying a copy to savour (is it sad that I have three copies? one signed?), if you’re reluctant to trust the word of a faceless blogging nerd on the interwebbies, you can check out the entire book, which Tranter has kindly posted to read (completely free), on his homepage: http://johntranter.com/00/the-floor-of-heaven.pdf

Tranter was also the founder of the fantastic (also extraordinarilly freeJacket electronic journal.*  There you can find a fantastic analysis of the book by Kate Lilley (originally published in the journal Southerly), a reading that engages much of the intertextual commentary Tranter produces through his swirling narrative layers.

* The original journal appears here: http://jacketmagazine.com; it’s sequel Jacket2 (no longer edited by Tranter) can be found here: http://jacket2.org/

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