13 February 2013

On the Spectrum of Possible Deaths, by Lucia Perillo

Poetry. Copper Canyon Press. 978-1-55659-397-0

I have seldom read a book of poetry from cover to cover in less than 2 days, but I plowed through these. What pleasure. I read about Lucia Perillo in a copy of The Nation magazine and thought she sounded good. She is.

From "My Father Kept the TV On:"

while the books lay open, scattered facedown
like turtles sunning, the jackets hunched, with a little
hump in the hunch from the trough of the spine...

If I'm going to choose my nostalgia, it is a no-brainer
that I'm going to side with books, with the days
before the lithium-ion battery, but after
Philip Roth and John le Carré were born books not too
highbrow or too low, but sometimes thick
and overdue. Books the fathers read to escape us...

*****

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