Attention Span 2009 – Elizabeth Robinson
Laura Sims | Stranger | Fence Books | 2009
This reflection on the early death of the author’s mother could have been bathetic, but instead it is quirky, perceptive and, while affectively convincing, strange.
Keith Waldrop | Transcendental Studies | University of California | 2009
A terrific, substantive collection.
Thomas A. Clark | of Woods and Water | Moschatel Press | 2008
Inheritor of Ian Hamilton Finlay’s mantle, Clark writes deceptively simple lyrics whose modulations creep up on the reader.
Eileen Myles | The Importance of Being Iceland | Semiotexte | 2009
This book of essays is really funny, but also astute, pointed, full of characteristic Myles dynamism.
Barbara Guest | Forces of Imagination | Kelsey St. Press | 2003
I just keep reading and rereading this one, and every time find Guest’s poetics sharp, often humorous, haunted, compelling.
Truong Tran | Four Letter Words | Apogee Press | 2008
These poems are formally lively, while the content here zings.
Orlando White | Bone Light | Red Hen Press | 2009
White is a young writer and this is his first book. Its intense focus interrogates language letter by letter.
Tyrone Williams | On Spec | Omnidawn | 2007
James Laughlin | The Way it Wasn’t | New Directions | 2006
Notes toward a memoir that Laughlin never wrote, this book is vastly entertaining (JL refers to Bill Clinton as “Smiley”) and full of good literary gossip. It is also heartbreaking to get hints at how hard it is to keep a literary press alive, especially as Laughlin struggles to retain authors who are lured away by larger presses (e.g., John Hawkes, Anne Carson).
Myung Mi Kim | Penury | Omnidawn | 2009
Painful content, exquisitely sculpted writing.
More Elizabeth Robinson here.