Triple Review: Nick Demske, By the Numbers, and My Gargantuan Desire

For these three poets, the goal of experimentation remains the same as when Auden first hinted at it: setting off on an untested poetic path assumes profound risk. For the intrepid poet willing to police his own lines, clean his own house, and check his own impulses, a singular habitat of his own lies within scope.

For Us What Music?: The Life and Poetry of Donald Justice

Jerry Harp opens his critical biography boldly asserting that Donald Justice “should be considered among the greatest experimental poets of the latter half of the twentieth century.” Although Justice is hardly a name that comes to mind within the context of experimental writing, Harp maintains that Justice’s work is art that “challenges the very tradition of which it is a part.

The Broken Word

The Broken Word is at first glance not a complete change of artistic tack. It is a narrative poem and so in verse the closest cousin to the novel. But Foulds is not playing it safe, because as a poetic form it is one of the hardest to pull off. The poet cannot rely purely on the usual musical charms of prosody and language; in addition he must emplace a current in which to snare the reader and propel him forward, a current that consists of the two chief requisites of fiction, namely plot and character.

Living Must Bury

In Living Must Bury, Josie Sigler’s first collection and the winner of the Fence 2010 Motherwell Prize, readers run headlong into a similar recognition. Sigler begins by overturning the traditional table of contents, and instead of the neat rows of capitalized one- to five-word phrases, each of her titles is a kind of catalog, an index to an unruly field guide.

Also Known As

Much has been written on the subject of identity politics; by contrast, relatively little has been written concerning the field of identity poetics. Elizabeth Robinson’s latest book, Also Known As, explores this largely uncharted territory, taking up questions of identity and authorship as its premise and complicating them via the introduction of numerous heteronyms.

Approaching Ice

Through two chronological poem sequences, Bradfield creates a new kind of log book. She traces the movement of explorers starting in 1820, through the glacial landscape, and inserts definition poems linking terms from an eighteenth-century navigational manual with her own approaches to love and ice.

We Are Starved

First in the Mountain West Poetry series, edited by Stephanie G’Schwind & Donald Revell “Kryah’s lines are full of figurative grace: The images stun and accumulate. We Are Starved introduces an important poetic vision, a surprising and exciting voice.” —Laura Kasischke, author of Space, in Chains and The Raising “In haunted days more filled with […]