Parks recently released her sophomore album, ‘My Soft Machine’. Now, the Mercury Prize winner has announced that Fourth Estate won an eight-publisher auction for the singer’s debut poetry and song lyrics book from the record.
The Magic Border: Poetry and Fragments From My Soft Machine is set to be released on September 12 and will combine “never-before-seen poetry, song lyrics and stunning images from photographer Daniyel Lowden.”
— Arlo Parks (@arloparks) June 13, 2023
The book will consist of 20 original poems, which explore “the queer experience, Blackness, grief, trauma and love”, and the complete lyrics from ‘My Soft Machine’.
“Writing poetry, to me, is about profound interiority,” said Parks. “It is about wading into the saltwater of your own body, capillaries bursting, eyes brimming, unmoored.”
“This collection is the fruit of that inner probing. It is a tangled mass of everything that has made me angry or giddy or low or impossibly happy to be alive. It has taken me almost 23 years to share my poetry beyond a few trusted friends. Poetry was my place, my little clearing in the forest, where I could quietly put everything I was holding. I’m not sure what gave me the courage to open up that space to you but here I am, doing it. I am proud to show you this personal lens that life shimmers through. This book is no longer mine. It is yours.”
This week also saw the 22-year-old perform on US radio station Sirius XM, and record a rendition of ‘Jasmine’, the 2012 demo by Jai Paul. Check out the cover below.
Arlo Parks has always shown her admiration for Paul. On ‘Hurt’, from the indie–pop singer’s debut 2021 album ‘Collapsed In Sunbeams’, she sang about being “so stuck on the new Jai Paul.” In a recent interview The Guardian article, Parks spoke about her love for the mysterious pop star whose Coachella set is “still burnt in [her] mind.”
Recalling Paul’s debut performance, she said: “He’d never played a live show before, but to people my age who love music, he’s like a pop star. You could tell in the most endearing way that he had never been on stage, but he had such a powerful voice. Everyone was singing along at the top of their lungs.”
HERE IS MORE FOOTAGE OF JAI PAUL IN COACHELLA ENJOY YALL !! HIS DEBUT WAS LEGENDARY 🙏 pic.twitter.com/j9F71CIAIr
— Rog Pelinka (@L3bronSonlyfans) April 16, 2023
In a three-star review of ‘Collapsed In Sunbeams‘, NME said, “There’s ample to consider, decode and treasure from an artist who consistently makes poring over the lyric sheet line-by-line as much fun as the finished product.” The record included her recent singles, ‘Blades’ and the Phoebe Bridgers-assisted ‘Pegasus‘.
In September, Parks will embark on a UK and Europe headline tour, including a show at London’s Eventim Apollo. Check out the dates below and buy tickets here.
5 – Dublin, 3Olympia Theatre
14 – Amsterdam, Paradiso
15 – Brussels, Ancienne Belgique
17 – Berlin, Huxley’s Neue Welt
19 – Milan, Alcatraz
21 – Paris, L’Olympia
28 – London, Eventim Apollo