On the subject of serial killers, poet Ruth Danon writes that they “leave notes, write in code.” They “grow increasingly impatient.”
“They hate the dark,” she muses. “They want to be found.”
So do poets. And Danon’s latest collection, Word Has It (Nirala Publications, 2018) reads like a series of notes dispatched from the brink of an apocalypse. Birds fall from the sky. Red-eyed people weep. There is blood. Dark, ominous omens of all shapes and sizes rain down.
In a time of deepfakes and alternative facts, we often ask ourselves what is real anymore, how can we trust our own eyes? Chris Campanioni chimes in on our collective existential crisis with his latest book of hybrid works, the Internet is for real in which he proposes, as the title indicates, perhaps the most sure thing in our world is that which is simultaneously everywhere and nowhere. As if cutting and pasting a Pinterest of poetry, memoir, and essays, Campanioni invites us to join him through a pastiche of pop, pulp, and philosophy as he analyzes the internet and its impact on intrapersonal and interpersonal relationships, as well as identity within individual and cultural contexts.
One can hold a crossbow and a pussy / Willow with the same affection. / One can dream her own body in the arms / of the blue Mary
Jane was handing someone a bouquet of satay, / gushing about Muller’s Foreign Cinema and Laszlo, / when I told her about the abortion. A party / not the best place to breathe new disclosures, to say: / The baby would be three years old now.
Finally the war was over / we could go home but / wife was wary. Those houses? / said, watching the news. / >Those stores? schools? police? Fake. / believe what you see.
A Review of Taneum Bambrick’s VANTAGE
This week, GMR’s editor in chief, Liz Powell, is blogging at the Best American Poetry site.
A graphic review of Paige Ackerson-Kiely’s Dolefully, A Rampart Stands
She took the knife out now. Richard had just risen, the mattress swelling with the forgiveness of his weight. He paused at the bathroom door, the light behind him throwing a shadow on the outline of his taut belly. A stiff, wiry hair, strong as an antenna, pointed from his middle roundness. Clara Jayne had the overwhelming urge to pluck it. Maybe even to suck it. He said, “I’m so glad we’re doing this,” “this” meaning the child he wanted and she didn’t.
It’s not like he can just be a rich dude, / my friend says of a guy we know. He has / enough money to keep him from finding / a job, not enough to just work on finding / himself. In money there are so many wrong / amounts. Zero, for instance.
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