“The poems in BEGIN AT ONCE are truly investigations, never simply statements of things the poet already claims to know. They wander—sometimes lightly, sometimes darkly, sometimes with a quiet but dark irony, but always generously—over all sorts of contrasting subjects with a startling insight that traces the swift and shocking changes of a life lived in a world that’s genuinely right here, right now. Beth Joselow’s poems discover, and uncover, keen truths that always surprise and unsettle and make us think again about things we believed we understood. There’s real wisdom in BEGIN AT ONCE, and the world sure does need more of that.”—Mark Wallace
“In five stunning sequences, Sarah Riggs has created a poetics of elastic migrations that imagines the world as clusters, skeins, and motions whose innate peril is miraculously saved in hte act of naming: ‘each name for a thing seems intent to curl from its shelled meaning.’ Places, histories, persons, myth and object, intimacy and incident, are precision shorelines of simultaneous apprehension and erasure. In this subtle and luminous first book, Sarah Riggs has engaged our most fundamental quandaries in a poetry that announces, in Stevens’ phrase, ‘a new knowledge of reality.'”—Ann Lauterbach
“[Riggs] turns her acute eye to contemporary culture as well as natural history and her ear to the subtle balances of rhythm and assonance. The result is a beautiful attention that illuminates nuance, making the everyday world more detailed and thus more grand.”—Cole Swensen
Sarah Riggs is the author of WATERWORK (Chax Press, 2007), Chain of Miniscule Decisions in the Form of a Feeling (Reality Street Editions, 2007), 60 TEXTOS (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2010), 36 Blackberries (Juge Editions), and . Her book of essays, Word Sightings: Poetry and Visual Media in Stevens, Bishop, and O’Hara was published by Routledge in 2002. She has translated or co-translated from the French the poets Isabelle Garron, Marie Borel, Etel Adnan, Ryoko Sekiguchi, and, most recently, Oscarine Bosquet. Several of Riggs’s books of poetry have appeared in French translations by Françoise Valéry and others, with the publishers Éditions de l’attente and Le Bleu du ciel. A member of the bilingual poetry collective Double Change and founder of the interart non-profit Tamaas, she divides her time between the U.S. coasts and Paris, where she is a professor at NYU-in-France.
“Linh Dinh is one of the most consistently surprising writers around. One can find sources & roots for his writing, explain the traces of surrealism through the presence, say, of the French in Vietnam (tho they were driven out a decade before he was born), note that he is hardly the only good or successful Vietnamese American poet, let alone the only poet to come from a working class background, yet he is not writing ‘about’ or even ‘toward’ nor ‘from’ any one of these contexts so much as he is through them—they are lenses, filters, that condition his perspective on everyday life. Imagine what any other poet with this strong a sense of form would have had to become in order to write such poetry. Ted Berrigan, for example. Berrigan shares Linh’s class background, which enables him to be as ruthless in a different way as Linh is in his. But the comparison stops there. Linh is writing straightforward poetry, but from a perspective shared by almost no one else. This kind of exile is far deeper than mere geography…you can feel Linh’s deep loneliness on every page & realize that there are aspects of his poetry that you can’t find anywhere else. We probably haven’t had a writer this singular since the death of William Burroughs.”—Ron Silliman
Linh Dinh was born in Saigon, Vietnam in 1963, came to the US in 1975, and has also lived in Italy and England. He is the author of two collections of stories and four books of poems. His work has been anthologized in Best American Poetry 2000, Best American Poetry 2004, Best American Poetry 2007 and Great American Prose Poems from Poe to the Present, among other places. Linh Dinh is also the editor of the anthologies Night, Again: Contemporary Fiction from Vietnam (Seven Stories Press, 1996) and Three Vietnamese Poets (Tinfish, 2001), and translator of Night, Fish and Charlie Parker, the poetry of Phan Nhien Hao (Tupelo, 2006). Blood and Soap (Seven Stories Press, 2004) was chosen by the Village Voice as one of the best books of 2004. His poems and stories have been translated into Italian, Spanish, German, Dutch, Portuguese, Japanese and Arabic, and he has been invited to read his works all over the US, London, Cambridge and Berlin. He has also published widely in Vietnamese. He lives in Philadelphia. His works from Chax Press are AMERICAN TATTS (2005), JAM ALERTS (2007), and SOME KIND OF CHEESE ORGY (2009).
Glenn Mott’s ANALECTS ON A CHINESE SCREEN is modeled on a form that reaches to an earlier tradition of narrative and storytelling, where the “I” refers to a protean self. The aim is at social enlightenment, with an insistent connection of poetry with the external world. “ANALECTS ON A CHINESE SCREEN” is a book of humility rather that the falsely heroic, written by one as sensitive to the attenuations of life and the nuances of culture as any I’ve ever read.”-Garrett Hongo
Winner of THE GIL OTT AWARD
In Trace Peterson’s first collection of poems, SINCE I MOVED IN, “…desire is the restless remainder of body subtracted from voice, or maybe it’s voice from body. Whitmanian in its quick and tender grandeur, its penchant for direct address, and its abstract kinkiness and longing, SINCE I MOVED IN moves exorably from the transgendering (non) performance of ‘Trans Figures’ to the startled, suspended chiliasm of ‘Spontaneous Generation,’ where at last the fetish body, dispersed into landscape, becomes simply an ambient mode of seeing, or saying, in a post-everything ecology where voice broods over the face of the waters, becoming the (prosthetic) body of the world.”–Tenney Nathanson
The new book by prolific L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poet Bruce Andrews, SWOON NOIR never fails to shake up linguistic expectations, without ridding itself of Andrews’ characteristically wide ranging diction and attention to sound, with lines like “Ventriloquism helluva Cinderella” and “Rapt literalist proxy poppers.” Andrews has published several dozen books of poetry and performance scores, many of which are also available from SPD. He has taught Political Science at Fordham University since 1975.