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Dear Jenny, We Are All Find

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  90 ratings  ·  15 reviews
"Jenny Zhang's poems broadcast themselves with a surrealist anxiety. 'Can't I be my own dream?' she asks. The answer is always yes and always no. With dizzying energy and intelligence, Zhang forages through familial, global, and even anatomical configurations vainly outlining an identity that manifests only to shift and move restlessly on. This book brings to mind a 21st c ...more
Paperback, 103 pages
Published February 2012 by Octopus Books
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I had the pleasure of hearing Jenny Zhang read from this book before it was out a few months ago and was utterly blown away once she was done with the first twenty-five or so words. I point this out because this book is so different and original and KILLER that one needs a bit of time to get hip to what is happening.

In my opinion, what is happening in Dear Jenny, We Are All Find is something utterly miraculous and to be carefully savored: poetry that isn't arch or sentimental or just a bunch of
David Schaafsma
Alfred Jarry and the cast of his absurd anti-aristocratic play was howled off the stage in 1896 Paris, as the play finished with its's empathic, "merde!" What would become of theater, art, the lovely impressionistic artistic renditions of Monet and Renoir that were going on at the time. Post WWI, "the war to end all wars," aesthetic-political outrage to Reason and what were seen as Modernist extensions of Reason such as dada and surrealism emerged, the Theater of Madness by Antonin Artaud, later ...more
Matt Walker
Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems like some books are praised solely for their subversive or "important" content, with little regard for whether the writer's technique or style is, you know, good or interesting. One Goodreads reviewer says, "You could say that the dead sperm line is sort of a litmus test for the potential reader of this collection. If it bothers you, you may choose to skip this wild batch of brain-burners. But if you find it funny or intriguing, Zhang's work is probably going to roc ...more
Jenny Zhang obviously likes to goof around. This disjointed grab bag of poems is full of unexpected exclamations like "I was wet and I farted dead sperm from a butthole that doesn't want to poop/except in libraries" and "I was not even really alive." You could say that the dead sperm line is sort of a litmus test for the potential reader of this collection. If it bothers you, you may choose to skip this wild batch of brain-burners. But if you find it funny or intriguing, Zhang's work is probably ...more
5 stars for the first half
very clever/refreshing/sharp images, funny
made me think of Uselysses
nearly cried at the butterfly poem on the train
thinking about my dad

3 stars for the second half
became a series of play-on-words poems
that I still liked but. . .
"I nearly faint from the love I nearly was capable of."

(first half YES, second half meh)
There were a few poems in here that were interesting, but many that just seemed like long lists of things you can do with your body, generally gross. I'm not opposed to you talking about about poop or blow-jobs, I just didn't ever get to a point. Trying to be shocking, trying to gross, trying to be unique? I'm not sure but it didn't do much of anything for me.
I have been reading reading reading contemporary poetry and this is def one of my favs in a long ass time. It has everything. Everything is what I want in art/poetry. It def has the zeitgeist. Big time. I have re-read it and re-read multiple times on the London tube. I feel like I could re-read it forever and ever and never tire of it. It's got whim and wit. It's got wisdom. It's got the pain of living on various borders. It's nomadic in music and nomadic in feelings. It is big mind. Big bridge. ...more
Sara Jane
So smart and clever and stylistically inspiring sometimes, but it seems to be trying a little too hard to be gross or racy or both (so many turd references and so many drops of the c-word, but I guess it's poetry so it's okay? I'm unsure).
I found Jenny Zhang's writing through her short stories and articles on Rookie. It is, quite simply, incredible.
This volume of poetry is stunning, and I laughed and cried and was confused in equal measure.
several of the poems in this collection knocked me down a flight of stairs, covered me in junk mail, and left me wondering what exactly just happened. I like that.
Dena Rash Guzman
Jenny's poems are off the hook. Well crafted little droplets of weirdness. There's something very tender here, too. Read this.
Sarah Cook
The "Motherlands" section was particularly stellar.
This book made me weep.
deliciously strange, naughty
Rachel Green
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Jenny Zhang is the author of the poetry collection, DEAR JENNY, WE ARE ALL FIND (Octopus Books, 2012). Her fiction, non-fiction, and poetry have appeared in Jezebel, Glimmertrain, The Iowa Review, The Guardian, Diagram, The Walrus, Octopus, Weird Deer, and Vice magazine. She holds degrees from the Iowa Writers' Workshop and Stanford University. She writes for teenage girls at Rookie magazine and t ...more
More about Jenny Zhang...
Hags Glimmer Train Stories, #80 Prelude The Iowa Review (Fall 2011) Clock 3

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