Recent & Notable 2012
Adam Clay, A Hotel Lobby at the Edge of the World (Minneapolis, Minn.: Milkweed Editions, 2012). “One of the best young American poets writing today, Adam Clay engages fully with the natural world, gracefully dredging up the mysteries embedded in modern life–paper dolls clipped from the morning news, the ringing ears of lightening strike victims–and bringing ‘the patient sadness that will outwit the memory of a spark’ to life in precise swirls of language.”–Alex Lemon
Jack Gilbert, Collected Poems (New York: Knopf, 2012). Understated, elegant, formally precise, Gilbert’s poetry possesses an uncompromising integrity of vision, voice and feeling. This is the poetic legacy of an American master, whose work deserves the widest audience and the deepest attention.–Jon Thompson
Peter Gizzi, Threshold Songs (Wesleyan: Wesleyan University Press, 2012). Peter Gizzi’s latest example of open frequency poetry finds mysterious languages–pseudo-scientific, philosophical, quasi-stream-of-consciousness reportage– dedicated to recording the experience of being alive and aware of the world and the limits of existence. Uncanny, and often, uncannily beautiful.–Jon Thompson.
Franz Wright, Kindertotenwald: Prose Poems (New York: Knopf, 2011). The discursive, looser, meditative voice of Franz Wright in these prose poems has lost none of its power to make us see the appalling, horrific, brutal world we live in, a world in which innocence is violated as a matter of course, but these poems also suggest that it is at least partly redeemable by recognizing its exquisite gifts, among which Wright numbers tenderness.–Jon Thompson