Attention Span 2012 | Minal Singh, Kaveh Bassiri, and friends
Jerome Rothenberg | 25 Caprichos a partir de Goya | Calamus Poesia
Mark Liedner| Beauty Was the Case that They Gave Me | Factory Hollow
Joshua Edwards and Van Edwards | Campeche: Poems & Photographs | Noemi
Kim Gek Lin Short | China Cowboy | Tarpaulin Sky
Mary Jo Bang, trans. | Dante’s Inferno: A New Translation | Graywolf
Gina Abelkop | Darling Beastlettes | Apostrophe
Sommer Browning | Either Way I’m Celebrating | Birds LLC
Roger Sedarat | Ghazal Games | Ohio
Julian T. Brolaski | gowanus atropolis | Ugly Duckling
Andrea Rexilius | Half of What They Carried Flew Away | Letter Machine
Loren Erdrich and Sierra Nelson | I Take Back the Sponge Cake | Rose Metal
Caroline Bergvall, Laynie Browne, Teresa Carmody, and Vanessa Place, eds. | I’ll Drown My Book: Conceptual Writing by Women | Les Figues
Julia Bloch | Letters to Kelly Clarkson | Sidebrow
Rebecca Lindenberg | Love, An Index | McSweeney’s
Brandon Shimoda | O Bon | Litmus
Tomaz Salamun | On the Tracks of Wild Game | Ugly Duckling
Matthew Henriksen | Ordinary Sun | Black Ocean
Dan Magers | Party Knife | Birds LLC | #
Eric Baus | Scared Text | Center for Literary Publishing
Raúl Zurita | Songs For His Disappeared Love | Action
Joshua Corey and G.C. Waldrep, eds. | The Arcadia Project: North American Postmodern Pastoral | Ahsahta
Dot Devota | The Eternal Wall | Cannibal
Héctor Viel Temperley, trans. Stuart Krimko | The Last Four Books of Héctor Viel Temperley | Sand Paper
Joyelle McSweeney | The Necropastoral | spork
Frances Richard | The Phonemes | Les Figues
Joseph Harrington | Things Come On: An Amneoir | Wesleyan
Dana Ward | This Can’t Be Life | Edge| $
Farid Matuk | This Isa Nice Neighborhood | Letter Machine
Noel Black Uselysses | Ugly Duckling | *
Anna Moschovakis | You and Three Others are Approaching A Lake | Coffee House
These titles were selected by
C. Violet Eaton
Chris Martin *
Douglas Hahn #
Mary Austin Speaker $
Robert Alan Wendeborn
* Microreview of Noel Black’s Uselysses (Ugly Duckling) by Chris Martin
A much anticipated full-length debut, Black’s book enfolds libraries within its wings, which flap about on sonar-taut lines. It’s a book of friendship and derangement, hope and domestic adventure. It concludes with the New Narrative’s newest classic, “Prophecies for the Past,” which Kevin Killian called “the sort of reading experience they must have invented poetry for.” And Noel wrote that shit in prose.
Chris Martin is the author of American Music (Copper Canyon 2007) and Becoming Weather (Coffee House 2011).
# Microreview of Dan Magers’ Party Knife (Birds LLC) by Doug Hahn
Party Knife‘s poems are boiling with dark humor, quiet rage, and poignant sadness. They weave the conscious and unconscious with an Ashberian intensity that verges on schadenfreude, but in the end we glimpse the everyday sublime. On the surface level, these poems are very funny and very bizarre, but they are also fine examples of poetic form and do indeed have a profound overall meaning—this is what makes the book special to me: in a world filled with either self-important or glib post-MFA projects, here is a poet who excels at both entertainment and instruction. On a more personal note, I worked and lived as a poet in post-9/11 New York City for many years, and this is a book that embodies the artist’s experience in that horrible and amazing place in American time.
$ Microreview of Dana Ward’s This Can’t Be Life (Edge) by Mary Austin Speaker
The book that I anticipated most this year is Dana Ward’s This Can’t Be Life, published by Edge Books. Typing Wild Speech, Dana’s excellent chapbook, is included here in full and bowled me over just as much as it did the first time I heard him read from it. To hear Dana read, or to read him on the page, is to hear the unflinching inner monologue of someone who prizes social interaction as much as the drive to make art and is as exploratory in each endeavor. “Take for instance the notion of ‘poet.’ I’ve allowed a lot of myth to hold sway over how I perform that for myself. . . . How to be ‘poet,’ ‘partner,’ ‘good friend,’ on & on. How resolve all this practical alienation,” he writes, fully aware of both the banalities (with which he quickly dispatches) and the moral consequences of asking such a question. It’s brave, totally compelling writing, and beyond that, it is joyful and anxious and stylish and very, very smart.
Mary Austin Speaker is the author of the chapbooks The Bridge (Push Press, 2011) and 20 Love Poems for 10 Months (forthcoming from Ugly Duckling); a collaborative play, I am You This Morning You Are Me Tonight, written with her husband, poet Chris Martin; and the forthcoming full-length collection, Ceremony, due out in 2013 from Slope Editions.
Return to 2012 directory.