Are Friends Electric? was published in 2018 and won the Peter and Mary Biggs Poetry Award at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards in 2019.
Are Friends Electric? offers a vivid and moving vision of a past, present and future mediated by technology. The poems investigate how we incorporate technology into our lives and bodies. Heath asks how technology can keep us close with those we have lost. How might our experiences of grieving and remembering be altered?
Helen has this gift of striking a tone that is at once intimately human, and uncanny. The mystery of how she achieves that is part of what makes her so good .... I love these poems for the way they look ever outwards and inwards at the same time.
– Ashleigh Young
Helen on the Academy of New Zealand Literature.
Review on Cordite by Amy Brown.
Review on Landfall online by Mary Cresswell.
Cover art by Kerry Ann Lee.
Graft was published in 2012 and won the NZSA Jessie Mackay Best First Book for Poetry Award in 2013.
The poems in Graft attempt to bring things together – ideas and cultures, people, sometimes to heal. Sometimes there are unlikely pairs: science and magical thinking, fact and fiction, myth and history. Sometimes there are more predictable pairings with less predictable outcomes – mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters. They dig away at things, trying to find a truth or an answer or a lost person. What we find is often not what we are looking for.
After reading these poems, I feel like my brain has been flipped around a couple of times, in the best way.
– Hera Lindsay Bird
Hear Helen talk to Our Changing World about Graft.
Review on Booksellers NZ blog by Hera Lindsay Bird.
Review on Landfall online by Tim Upperton.
Graft on Good Reads.
On Reid's Reader.
Cover art by Billie-Joye Stewart.