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A Father's Day
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October 2011

How to Bake a Planet

Pete Mullineaux

ISBN: 978-1-910669-54-9

Page Count: 74

Publication Date: Friday, September 16, 2016

Cover Artwork: Jessie Lendennie, photography. Design: Siobhan Hutson

Click to play movie Pete Mullineaux - Careful What You Wish For Orangutan play

About this Book

From the Garden of Eden to the pavement of romance, outer space to bubble wrap, endangered species to climate change, Pete Mullineaux’s vivid and wide-ranging fourth collection explores personal-societal themes of loneliness, isolation, connection and dislocation; our ambivalent relationship with the natural world; ecological and environmental concerns; our confusions regarding science and religion; the elusive element of time. Philosophical, inventive, playful and fanciful at times, but always accessible and earthed by reality.

‘Mullineaux “bends an ear towards the earth” and creates a beautiful and whimsical music that tracks the connections and disconnects in our relationships with each other and with our planet. A wandering minstrel who captures the atmosphere of bus rides, cafés, city streets and scrapyards in tones that recall the poems of Roger McGough or the songs of Pete Seeger. He takes us into art galleries and walks us around music festivals, responding to all he sees and hears with imagination and kindness.’ 
Catherine Ann Cullen

‘Poignant love poems and family poems, poems inspired by art, music & the business of living and, perhaps most significant of all, poems arising out of compassion for those who “wear the uniform of poverty” or cannot speak for themselves – these are the ingredients of Pete Mullineaux’s intriguingly titled How to Bake a Planet, a book that voices many of the anxieties of contemporary life and, in the venerable tradition of the protest song, to considerable effect wears its political heart on its sleeve.’ 
Pat Boran

‘One of the warmest poets rocking around this little island of ours.’  
Alvy Carragher, 

Author Biography

Pete Mullineaux grew up in the UK but since 1991 has lived in Galway Ireland where he teaches development education through creative writing and drama. His work has been featured on RTE’s Arena and published in numerous international journals and anthologies. His three previous collections are: Zen Traffic Lights (Lapwing, 2005) A Father’s Day (Salmon, 2008) & Session (Salmon, 2011). He has also written for the stage and RTE radio and published several educational resources most recently Just a Second! Exploring Global Issues through Drama & Theatre (Afri 2015).  


Review: How to Bake a Planet listed in World Literature Today, March 2017

British-born and Irish transplanted poet Pete Mullineaux returns with this approachable collection that draws his concerns about human isolation from the natural world together with his inventive and thoughtful wordplay. Mullineaux demonstrates a poet’s precision with words yet leaves a place for more casual readers of poetry in his work.

Review: How to Bake a Planet reviewed by Brianne Alphonso for 2Jacket

How to Bake a Planet combines the somber with the comedic while confronting us with the reality that time decays — and sometimes, too many times, we are alone. Solitude is not the key theme of this book so much as the danger of distraction in an ever-expanding world. How can a person form connections when the human shelf-life is so short and no one can be bothered to veer out of his own lane? The singular voice of this poetry — one part sarcasm, one part irony, two parts morbid bluntness — poignantly conveys the feeling of “seeking something firm / to anchor the uncertainty / or perhaps contemplating / the ripple effect she could make / by gently rocking the boat.” Mullineaux draws on anxieties about a poisoned planet, strangled relationships, and the ever-present ticking of time in an attempt to uncover the smothered sentiments we all keep locked away.

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