Even more surreal and pleasurable than being declared Fictional Poet Laureate of The United States of America in John Birmingham’s thriller novel After America is hearing the words of my fictional Poet Laureate counterpart being read in the audiobook version of said novel.
I’m particularly tickled by the high-pitched let’s-face-it-milquetoast voice that narrator Kevin Foley puts on when he delivers “my” lines, especially when compared to his own basso profundo when narrating. It’s in keeping with JB’s characterisation of Ford-the-poet-laureate as a slight, nervous, wimpy kind of guy, but part of me just wants to shout out “poets can be manly too!”
Which prompts the question: who’s the least wimpy poet you can think of? Or the wimpiest?