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Joe Luna

Joe Luna


Joe Luna lives in Brighton, where he runs the Hi Zero reading series and edits Hi Zero magazine.

Crater Press published the letterpress fold Google Song in November 2011; his poems have appeared in, amongst others, Poems, Written Between October and December 2010 (Grasp Press), The Claudius App. (online), Better than Language: An Anthology of New Modernist Poetries (Ganzfeld Press), FRIENDS (Critical Documents), Sous les Paves, The Cambridge Literary Review, Damn the Cæsars, Lana Turner and The Death and Life of Great American Cities. A booklet, LVRSLVRSLVRSLVRS, was privately distributed in 2010; the .pdf epic FAILCORE is still public. ASTROTURF came out in 2013; other books followed suit.

His blog is All Over the Grid.



Cobden Road, Brighton on June 1st 2012



  • 'For the White Lake Blot', the Claudius App.
  • 'The Preface', the Claudius App.
  • LVRSLVRSLVRSLVRS (Hi Zero!, 2010)
  • Google Song (Crater Press, 2011)
  • ASTROTURF (Hi Zero, 2013)
  • Ten Zones (Hi Zero, 2014)
  • The Future (Iodine, 2014)
  • Colleen Lopez Battery Fiasco (Hi Zero, 2015)
  • Data for Ethics (Hi Zero, 2015)
  • 'A Set for Elegy,' The Literateur (2016)
  • 'Gratitude,' Helium Journal, vol. 3 (2016)




'Sometimes ("sometimes and always"?) writing is like beating a dead horse with a rubber hose until it confesses. Or until, more likely, the gentle reader's sense of pity is sufficiently roused, and s/he slumps onto the poor defunct beast. Upon which the writer marvels at a supposed ability to relate to an audience, the trick of this coercive empathy being that the writer has — unobserved, if a little bit good, or lucky! — taken the place of the horse, propping the rubber hose upright in its bridle as if to strike again. A team of nano-elves in Paris Review/PGA co-branded sun visors immediately sets to work turning the now superfluous horse to glue for use in setting reader and author like two spooning waves in a perm. They save the horse: recycling is mandatory now in New York City.' - Jeff Nagy, Poetry Project Newsletter (December/January 2013)

'Google Song, against all the impositions placed on it, emerges indeed as a song, a song which – with perhaps fewer misgivings than are appropriate – I would describe as "beautiful." It doesn't follow, however, that the poem is reconciled. With the general heart its object of pursuit, Google emerges as the ironic hero in a quest narrative. In writing "try and find / my general heart of me," Luna deliberately eschews the catenative verb ("try to find") for a verbal hendiadys that allows him to enjamb the shimmering promise implied by this most robust of search engines. But this search must, in a general way, be reciprocal – or perhaps even less than reciprocal. The poetic voice entreats the search engine thus: "break off me a piece of / your best code." This "breaking off" isn't a beneficent offering from the machine, but a crude appropriation of the human in order to create a slick algorithm from it – out of which the user will then either find the general heart of her, or else – defiantly, forlornly, or ambivalently – she will not.' - Colin Lee Marshall, Hix Eros 6 (August, 2015)

'Luna's vision is not despairing, though it is realistic in its inclusion of the harsh alongside the beautiful. As the first section [of Colleen Lopez Battery Fiasco] concludes: "all of space in sympathy gets even bigger." The plenty to be found within the poem makes this feel true; it's as if capitalism, consumerism, militarism, globalization, empire all have it backwards: we progress not through extensions of wired networks of control but through a deepening of sympathy, both in our poetry, and in our lives. Luna's poetry is not one of monolithic ego but rather one whose emphasis is on "others" [...] He sets himself in a tradition of British writers – one thinks of contemporary innovators like J.H. Prynne and Keston Sutherland but also in a curious way of Auden or even Milton – whose poetics focus on the interrogation of political power in language. The aim of such an interrogation is to discover pathways through language towards a more self-aware and other-aware community. It is the achievement of "Colleen Lopez Battery Fiasco," one of the most powerfully original poems written in this century so far, that in reading it we perhaps begin to hope, in a small way, that such a community might be possible.' - Stu Watson, Prelude, No. 2 (2016)


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