ISBN 978-1-946104-22-9. Poetry/Literature. 98 pages. $19.00
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One pleasure afforded by Steven Salmoni’s wondrous A Day of Glass is the quiet judiciousness with which it traces the poet’s necessarily imperfect efforts to delineate and place. But this critical attentiveness turns out to harbor something more intimate and tender: through our tracings we let the world trace itself within us, a reciprocity in which we don’t so much make claims as let ourselves be claimed: “On the other hand, the sea is not the other hand”; “To begin to drift / to remember the form you lose when, as drift, / the sea is unthinkable. If the wave is everywhere, the wave / is everywhere.” — Tenney Nathanson
A fearless exploration of how to proceed with inhabiting our language, when our words and our beloved lucid and reasonable sentences no longer seem to adhere to a common notion of reality. This poet is opened up to the fluid nature of our surround but wants to speak, not just to tell what is occurring, but to reach toward it, to be in tune with it. And he also wants to find how imagination itself can move when what it is working upon is already moving as constantly as the sea. He succeeds. Not surrendering to the possible confusion and whirl but staying completely specific to what is always coming and going, moving with shifting light and shifting shadow. These are poems that can be read individually, or as ongoing movements, toward his search for a new understanding of what can cohere. Reading them is to follow a line familiar enough in form to be grasped, but leading us, over and over, to new wonders. — Susan Thackrey
Glass is a transparent substance made in part of sand. It can be used, with sand, to measure time, in a sand-glass. Windows and greenhouses are made of it. A glass can be used to reflect the self, like a mirror. Glass can be container and ornament. You can drink from a glass. You can see better by wearing glass(es). Watery surfaces often resemble glass. Glass is surface through which the eye sees depth. It is at once a wall and a portal, a form that reveals its own incapacities. Philip Glass is a composer who deals in repetitions that open to reveal the beauty of differences. Steven Salmoni’s A Day of Glass puts all these meanings into play. An illuminating meditation on art as reflection, and as constant movement. — Susan Schultz