Book picks similar to
Among the Dead: Ah! and Afterward Yes! by Becca Jensen


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Macular Hole


Catherine Wagner - 2004
    That Wagner is in love with the world and its transactions--perceptions, superficial and otherwise; childbearing, painful and otherwise; gains, financial and otherwise--allows for a poetry that is full of song yet brazenly topical.

Novel Pictorial Noise


Noah Eli Gordon - 2007
    For over twenty years, the National Poetry Series has discovered many new and emerging voices and has been instrumental in launching the careers of poets and writers such as Billy Collins, Mark Doty, Denis Johnson, Cole Swensen, Thylias Moss, Mark Levine, and Dionisio Martinez.

Frail-Craft


Jessica Fisher - 2007
    The book and the dream are the poet’s primary objects of investigation here. Through deft, quietly authoritative lyrics, Fisher meditates on the problems and possibilities—the frail craft—of perception for the reader, the dreamer, maintaining that “if the eye can love—and it can, it does—then I held you and was held.” In her foreword to the book, Louise Glück writes that Fisher’s poetry is “haunting, elusive, luminous, its greatest mystery how plain-spoken it is. Sensory impressions, which usually serve as emblems of or connections to emotion, seem suddenly in this work a language of mind, their function neither metonymic nor dramatic. They are like the dye with which a scientist injects his specimen, to track some response or behavior. Fisher uses the sense this way, to observe how being is converted into thinking.”

Poem for the End of Time and Other Poems


Noelle Kocot - 2006
    As a poet who has achieved success in the realms of both grassroots popularity and national critical attention, Kocot is poised to claim her place as America’s boldest new poetic voice.

The Glass Age


Cole Swensen - 2007
    Starting there, this extended poem—part art criticism, part history—considers the phenomenon of glass, revealing the strength and fragility of our age in the minimalist style that has won Cole Swensen such acclaim.

Sight Map


Brian Teare - 2009
    Teare provides us with poems that insist on the simultaneous physical embodiment of tactile pleasure—that which is found in the textures of thought and language—as well as the action of syntax. Partly informed by an ecological imagination that leads him back to Emerson and Thoreau, Teare's method and fragmented style are nevertheless up to the moment. Remarkable in its range, Sight Map serves at once as a cross-country travelogue, a pilgrim's gnostic progress, an improvised field guide, and a postmodern "pillowbook," recording the erotic conflation of lover and beloved, deity and doubter.

Spar


Karen Volkman - 2002
    Volkman develops a new lyric density that marries the immediacy of image-centered poetry to the rhythmic resources of prose. Her first poem begins, Someone was searching for a Form of Fire, and this wild urge to seek form- and thus definition-in the most uncontainable of elements propels the book forward; each poem maps the mind's evolving positions in response to its variable and perilous encounters. Sometimes the encounter is romantic or purely carnal, a sensual landscape of human relations. At other times, nature itself has an almost humanly emotional connection to the speaker. While very much a living voice, the poems' speaker is not a consistent self but a mutable figure buffeted by tenderness, terror, irony, or lust into elaborate evasions, exclamations, verbal hijinks, and lyric flights. As its title suggests, Spar embodies both resistance and aspiration, while its epigraphs further emphasize the simultaneous allure and danger of the unknown within the sensual and material worlds and in the mind itself.

Tremble


C.D. Wright - 1961
    Wright interweaves familiar, coloquial speech with strikingly inventive language, leaving each poem a distinctive entity, yet interconnected by linked metaphors and images.

Mulberry


Dan Beachy-Quick - 2006
    Impelled by metaphor and lilting repetition, Mulberry seeks a sense of the world, and ultimately, finds a sense of the Infinite. Affording continual discoveries, Mulberry is a major work for the new century by an assured and lavishly gifted poet. Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of North True South Bright and Spell, He is chair of the MFA Writing Program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and recipient of a Lannan Foundation Residency.

A Mouth in California


Graham Foust - 2009
    A MOUTH IN CALIFORNIA, Graham Foust's fourth book of poetry, uses the ironies and anxieties of contemporary life as a foil for mordant and sometimes violent humor. Through mangled aphorisms, misheard song lyrics, and off-key phrasing, Foust creates a unique idiom of tragicomic pratfalls, a ballet of falling down. Yet the elasticity of Foust's language repels the stiff-necked adversaries of thought: what's the wrong way to break / that brick of truth back into music?

Torn Awake


Forrest Gander - 2001
    Proposing models of hybridity, each of the book's major sequences develops a unique subject, rhythm, and form. Bringing to light the molten potential at the core of personality, the poems illuminate ways that language, as history read by anthropologists, discourse between lovers, gestures between parent and child, graffiti in temples, or even language as an event in itself (the very experience of words at play), incarnates presence. Addressing father and son relationships, and venerating erotic love, Gander's poems surge with vitality: the energy of active discovery.

Buffalo Yoga: Poems


Charles Wright - 2004
    Wright's short lyrics, in Charles Simic's words, "achieve a level of eloquence where the reader says to himself, if this is not wisdom, I don't know what is" (The New York Review of Books). The poems in Buffalo Yoga are pristine examples of the Tennessee poet's deft, painterly touch-"crows in a caterwaul" are "scored like black notes in the bare oak"-and his oblique, expansive, and profound interrogation of mortality, as in the title sequence, where the soul is "a rhythmical knot. / That form unties. Or reties."

Deviant Propulsion


C.A. Conrad - 2005
    The title refers to the idea that those who are deviant propel the world forward at top speed. Delving into the center of the endless webs of repression against our bodies, desires, politics, and imaginations, are those whose actions and motion cut away at the systemic limitations of society. This collection of poems was written with the inspiration and work of these people in mind.As a working class queer poet, Conrad has had to fight through different stratifications of oppression his entire life. His poems vibrate with the flamboyant desire that manifests itself in queer culture, where the right to act on basic desires can become a battleground, and everyday acts of love and devotion must be enacted as a political form of defiance. The poems that emerge from this life long struggle illustrate the sharp edge of that defiance and desire, where joy is closely linked to death. In a world ruled by those who govern with fear, and in a landscape barbed with those who are terrified of desire, moving at speed of deviants is the only way to transform potential into action, and desire into positive change.

The Fatalist


Lyn Hejinian - 2003
    It offers humorous reflection upon our species' endless attempts to transmit insight regarding our human condition.

Medicine


Amy Gerstler - 2000
    In her new collection, Medicine, she deploys a variety of dramatic voices, spoken by such disparate characters as Cinderella's wicked sisters, the wife of a nineteenth-century naturalist, a homicide detective, and a woman who is happily married to a bear. Their elusive collectivity suggests, but never quite defines, the floating authorial presence that haunts them. Gerstler's abiding interests--in love and mourning, in science and pseudo-science, in the idea of an afterlife--are strongly evident in these new poems, which are full of strong emotion, language play, surprising twists, and a wicked sense of black humor.