Edges of Water by Maureen Owen
“In a land where FEELINGS shared is a transgression, we get propelled onward! If Elizabeth Murray’s promise that the subconscious is what we paint about, then Maureen Owen’s promise is by the poems. Always there first, as Freud said, ‘Where I go I find a poet has been there before me.’ Imagine Sigmund meeting up with the latest Owen book. ‘We think we look back / we just look outside / surface that is a state / of meringue / holiness that is a condition independent / of deity….'”—CA Conrad
Maureen Owen is editor of Telephone Books and author of over ten poetry collections, including American Rush, a Los Angeles Times Book Prize finalist, and AMELIA EARHEART, a recipient of the American Book Award. Formerly co-director of the Poetry Project, she now lives in Denver and teaches at Naropa University. Most recently, she is the author of EDGES OF WATER (Chax Press, 2013).
Entangled Bank, by James Sherry
Entangled Bank, by James Sherry.
Poetry. ISBN 978-0-9862640-8-5. 90 pages. Published November 1, 2016.
Entangled Bank opens with a set of five line poems dedicated to the “beauty” of various poets, a nuanced and generous version of Joseph Kaplan’s infamous Kill List, and concludes with a wrenchingly honest prose piece on Sherry’s correspondence with the late poet Stacy Doris on the limits of empathy. Between these gestures towards a troubled yet significant human connection, Sherry places poems in a variety of styles, as if styles were species in an ecosystem, a veritable “entangled bank.” Often he writes with scathing wit on the degradation of the environment and the fraudulence of the financial system. One line admonishes, “Wake up, this is about you.” And it is. You’re going to want it. — Rae Armantrout
Taking his theme from Darwin’s “entangled bank,” James Sherry pries open present life on the planet to reveal a tangled flow of vegetation, money, politics, beauty, selves, distributed networks, fish, nation states, death and friendship. “Couching nature as bundles and linkages,” he does not side-step the perils of hybridity but dives in head first: “Tamales of Sparta rolled global.” A dazzling display of formal invention leads up to an intimate, brutally candid chronicle of friendship and illness that is as clear-headed as it is passionate. And how can you not love a poem called “Memoir” that begins, “Dawn again / Fuck!” — Kit Robinson
Unbeauty will take you about as far as you can throw it, appeasing no one and nothing, all for good measure. James Sherry does not beware of entangling alliances, he foments them. — Charles Bernstein
Exit Moonshine, Enter Wall by Rodney Phillips
Exit Moonshine, Enter Wall
What is so diabolical about weather and classical music?
What happens when one grabs a contribution from Gertrude Stein?
Flow-Winged Crocodile & A Pair/Actions Are Erased/Appear by Leslie Scalapino
Flow–Winged Crocodile & A Pair/Actions Are Erased/Appear
“For myself and the cast, directing Leslie Scalapino's FLOW has been an extraordinary journey into language and the language in breath, the rhythms of effort to say as precisely as her savage delicacy of thought, her forcing us all to assume nothing in examining the fineness of our implication in each other”–Fiona Templeton.
FOUR FOR GLENN by Nathaniel Mackey
FOUR FOR GLENN
ISBN: NO ISBN
This new collection of four poems, including new work from Mackey's ongoing The Song of the Andoumboulou, is a lyrical homage to the jazz saxophonist Glenn Spearman. Like much of Mackey's work, these poems reside at the limits of language and song, where “immanence and transcendence meet, making the music social as well as cosmic, political and metaphysical as well” -Mackey, DISCREPANT ENGAGEMENT. “In addition to its romantic and lyric qualities, Mackey's work is an immediate encounter with an intense blending of knowledges, mythology, poetic insight and histories from every continent”-Chris Funkhouser. Saddle-stitched chapbook.
Get Serious: New & Selected Poems by Jefferson Carter
Jefferson Carter directs the Writing and Literature Program, and teaches developmental composition and poetry writing at Pima Community College, Downtown Campus. His eight books of poetry include Litter Box (Spork Press, 2004), SENTIMENTAL BLUE (Chax Press, 2007), MY KIND OF ANIMAL (Chax Press, 2010), and GET SERIOUS: NEW & SELECTED POEMS (Chax Press, 2013). He has lived in Tucson, Arizona, since 1954. He has won a Tucson/Pima Arts Council Literary Arts Fellowship, and his poems have appeared in such journals and e-zines as Carolina Quarterly, CrossConnect, 2River View, and Barrow Street. His chapbook Tough Love won the Riverstone Poetry Press Award.
Ghost Snow Falls Through the Void (Globalization) by Tenney Nathanson
Ghost Snow Falls Through the Void (Globalization)
“In GHOST SNOW FALLS THROUGH THE VOID (GLOBALIZATION), Tenney Nathanson by abandoning conventions of presentation to glimpse animate nature of being invents wonderful links (passages in a dated sequence) as incredibly funny morphs of actual life/ suffering/death instances. Nathanson's inserted accounts of daily life such as war on Iraq are his versions of Spicer's notion of the poet taking dictation from the radio. As we read we discover that the multitudes of faces and voices as if funny black holes that flow and morph into Walt Whitman, Cheney, or Orpheus as Tenney singing, like the quicksilver terminator in Terminator 2 flowing into then arising from linoleum, are a stream form of his Zen practice as merely unexpected occurrences”–Leslie Scalapino.
HEGELIAN HONEYMOON by Nick Piombino
This lovely chapbook by well known New York poet Nick Piombino includes eighteen succinct haiku-like pieces. “If you need/ to fight// and you don't believe/ in fate// join the war/ on hat” – “Weapons of Mass Affection.” Piombino's THEORETICAL OBJECTS Is also available from SPD.
Hopeful Buildings by Charles Alexander
“This book collects six works, different from each other in many respects, but all moving with a strong investigative force. Thinking is the experience of everyday living, and Charles Alexander's work is a poetry of thinking. But it is experience, not difficulty, that wonderfully complicates these poems and brings them very close. I hope many people will read HOPEFUL BUILDINGS and take great pleasure both in its detail and in the larger construct that the details, perceived, provide. I do”—Lyn Hejinian
Hostile by Heather Nagami
“Heather Nagami’s first book of poetry, HOSTILE, is written as though literature, and perhaps language, must begin again. It finds its way as it goes, as it finds out what poetry can be. That it does so with grace, power, and amazing courage, is obvious with every word encountered, every step around the parameters of what is possible”–Charles Alexander. “Hardly ever has found language, appropriated discourse, sounded more closely attuned to what Ms. Niedecker once referred to as the ‘condensery’ of poetry–not Reznikoff’s TESTIMONY, nor the early novels of Kathy Acker. Nagami is listening for all the elements in the language. What strikes me as a reader is the degree to which these texts remain true to their source materials while demonstrating a total commitment to the traditional effects of poetry–concision, a foregrounding of the formal elements of poetry, even a goofball elegance that has much to do with the New York School’s commitment to wit.
Huge Haiku by David McAleavey
“The poems here feature the best kind of innovation, that which retains the old in the new but also gives readers what they have never seen before. David McAleavey expands the form of the haiku into something alive and incisively of our time. Through the mathematical rigor of their stanzas and lines, the poems in HUGE HAIKU open themselves out to an astonishing variety of experiences and disruptive contrasts. Whether the subject is the natural world, the suburbs or the city, growing up or growing older, politics or language or absurdity, these poems never settle for easy answers, but pull us repeatedly back into a world that's both dangerous and full of possibility. In so doing, McAleaveay takes the great virtue of haiku – its exctness of detail–and focuses it resolutely on our own contemporary and wildly layered strangeness.” — Mark Wallace