Best NZ Poems

Albino American Alligator, Alligator mississip...

Albino American Alligator, Alligator mississippiensis at the California Academy of Sciences (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

‘Gator’, one of the poems from Kingdom Animalia, has been chosen by Bernadette Hall as of the Best NZ Poems of 2011. You can read the poem on the BNZP site and/or listen to a recording of me reading it.  There are plenty of wonderful poems on the site – I’m delighted to be part of such great company!


Kingdom Animalia in the window at Unity Books, Wellington

More reviews

Kingdom Animalia: the Escapades of Linnaeus has now been reviewed by Tedi Busch in the Nelson Mail, Patricia Prime in Takahē and Paula Green in the NZ Herald.

Freegard has glued the breach between poetry and science with lyricism, inventiveness, research, playfulness and miniature bursts of storytelling.  Paula Green

The South Island Takahē

Freegard’s is a restless poetry, expressing contemporary angst within a context of travel, or analyzing the stopping-places, trying to see clearly, and identifying with the flora and fauna.
Patricia Prime

The author’s imagination is infinite. In just one piece a witch teaches her to fly like a humming bird while advising a man from Japan about his cup of spaghetti and notes that our minds have minds of their own.
Tedi Busch

link to Nelson Mail review

I’ve also added an essay on Linnaeus to this site, if you’re interested in reading more about him – just click on the Linnaeus tab at the top of the home page.

Interview & Review

Tim Jones has been kind enough to interview me on his blog, about Kingdom Animalia. He also posted one of the poems from the book  (‘A Life Blighted by Pythons’) as his Tuesday Poem.  ‘Zot and the Axolotls’, also from the book, was chosen by Saradha Koirala as the Tuesday Poem hub poem recently.

I’ve only come across one review so far (early days), from the ODT, by Hamesh Wyatt.  It finishes:

“Kingdom Animalia: The Escapades of Linnaeus will get under your skin something fierce. It’s neat to have something brand-new and shiny.”

Kingdom Animalia is on Facebook

Kingdom Animalia: The Escapades of Linnaeus now has its own Facebook page.!/pages/Kingdom-Animalia-the-Escapades-of-Linnaeus/193381037376736?sk=wall

Launch photos, videos, reviews & more!

(I tried to put one of those little Facebook ‘Like’ buttons on this blog, but I haven’t quite figured it out yet. There is, however, a Facebook button at the top right of the Home Page, which should take you there.)

Kingdom Animalia: The Escapades of Linnaeus

Kingdom Animalia is a collection of poems that explore the various interactions between human beings and other animals, but also deals with wider subjects: love and loss, evolution and conservation, sex and death. The poems, which involve animals, as main subject or as passing guests, are arranged according to the six classes devised by eighteenth-century naturalist Carl Linnaeus, whose life’s mission was to classify the natural world. Modern taxonomy has evolved considerably but this standardised naming system is still a common language for classifying the natural world. The sections are linked by a prose poem about Linnaeus’ life.
ISBN 978 1 86940 473 4, 210 x 148mm, paperback, 88p, $24.99


 order this book from Auckland University Press