Alessio Zanelli is Italian, born in Lombardy. His native language is Italian, yet he writes poetry in English, a self-taught language. As someone who has lived and worked abroad for many years and knows just how difficult it is to be really fluent in a foreign language, let alone comfortable in a foreign culture, I'm impressed. […] We can learn a lot about ourselves from how others use our language. Alessio Zanelli has paid our language, Edward Thomas' English Words, a rare compliment, in turn we should take the time to read what he has to say.

 

JOHN PLEVIN – Pulsar Poetry Magazine

 

 

Get your dictionary for this Italian-speaker writing in English… Zanelli is a great original. No one else like him around. Abstract, deep, it's like St. Thomas Aquinas putting aside Summa Theologiae and deciding to write poetry. Metaphysics very nicely performed. One of a kind.

 

HUGH FOX – Ibbetson Street Press

 

 

With each poetry collection published, Zanelli gains respect and recognition from his peers while pleasing fans eager for his latest work. Zanelli is an Italian poet and world traveler who creates in English, an amazing feat in itself. His command of the English language is impressive. [...] One American critic says Zanelli is an original, one of a kind. That originality is attained through imprinting each thought and every poem with his essence.

 

LAUREL JOHNSON – Midwest Book Review

 

 

Zanelli’s poems are liminal, hovering between light and darkness, between elements, between the author’s mother language and his adopted language. Poems of twilight when, as Celts believed, the other world is briefly revealed. Evasive, tantalising, they compose a Book of Shadows, enticing the reader to enter into Alessio’s vision. 

 

GABRIEL GRIFFIN – Poetry On The Lake

 

 

Zanelli is truly astonished by life, the real and imagined, and this is the spell that draws the reader in. Precision and vision combine to make his words memorable; his sensual journey, all the more tangible... 

 

GARY BILLS – poet

 

There is nothing misty about these energetic, muscular poems: Zanelli casts an unnervingly clear eye over both inner and outer landscapes. If his poetry is rooted in the intense, immediate physicality with which he experiences the world, it also conveys an elegiac awareness of last things: there are moving meditations on ageing, illness, loss, ‘the time of no more.’ It is rich in imagery and allusion, varied and confident in form and style, lyricism and humour. Perhaps he is at his best when the complexities of language and thought resolve in a few lines of marvellous simplicity. With these poems the runner-poet promises to be ‘an absolute runner’.

 

ELISABETH ROWE – poet

 

 

Alessio Zanelli brings to these poems Mediterranean sensitivity expressed with taut, almost visceral intensity. His poems touch and explore constantly the fundamental elements of the physical landscape, particularly plains and mountains, but also range from reflective poems on mortality and the rigours of love to flashes of anger, humour and insight. His imaginative use of form and freshness of language offer a compelling read rich in discernment and creativity.

 

CHRITOPHER NORTH – poet

 

 

[…] Alessio Zanelli covers a wide range of fascinating experiences and emotions: a subtle sense of place and longing/belonging permeates the book. Because he is not an English-mother-tongue writer, he often uses unpredictable words that shine an even brighter light on his images or feelings: words that almost stun the reader into grasping his pictures and epiphanies, giving him a voice and style all his own.

 

MICHAEL HATHAWAY – Editor of Chiron Review

 

 

Much has been said of Italian Alessio Zanelli’s use of English as his artistic language. And that is certainly to be admired—his imagery, metaphor, varied colloquialisms, and the vitality of words he uses are better and more realized than the majority of the poetry by native English-speakers that I receive for this magazine. [...]

 

CHRISTOPHER HARTER – Editor of Bathtub Gin