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The Myth of the Simple Machines

4.40  ·  Rating Details  ·  20 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
The gorgeous simplicity of Laurel Snyder's language makes all the possibilities-and the impossibility-of living stand out starkly. Her machines are thought machines, memory machines, the machines of false and daily logic, and we recognize them all. And, of course, they don't work this time either, but Snyder has found the poignancy in this, and more than that, she has foun ...more
Paperback, 84 pages
Published September 1st 2007 by No Tell Books
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Jessie Carty
Mar 25, 2013 Jessie Carty rated it really liked it
Often when I'm reading a book of poems I find myself looking for the moment of ars poetica. The moment when a poet drops you a hint of what they think about the act of writing. And, in the case of this book, I think the title of the overall book could serve as an ars poetica because aren't poems these machines? They look simple, but once you dig in there is so much more to them than just a few lines. Probably my favorite poem was "Happily Ever After" which I don't want to quote too much from bec ...more
Mar 06, 2014 Laurel added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Recommends it for: everyone who doesn't hate poems
no shame in my 5 stars... it's my book. i better like it!
Mar 20, 2008 Cheryl rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: poetry lovers
Shelves: poetry
This review first appeared in MiPoesias magazine.

The Myth of the Simple Machines by Laurel Snyder - No Tell Books / 978-0-6151-6132-7 / 76pps

Separated into sections, the first, “The Machines” are dadaistic tremors of adolescence... “Here---a door to outside, but the girl/doesn’t face it, so you be the girl” and scarey ruminations of memories or premonitions. Either or both. Fable-ish. Surreal. Just the same. From “The Simple Machines” -

You’ll close your eyes, wave your arms
a little, but you’
Aug 25, 2010 Bernadette rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
Snyder's work is both fantastical and rooted in everyday experience. A magical perspective that pulls in aspects of fairy tales, confessionalism, and lyric imagery to create a fabulous collection I plan to return to over and over for its delightful perspectives.

From "Then Up--Shaken Morning"

Some light took shape, leaked onto earth,
onto sight, leaked onto trees. The house stood, ate the air
behind the steps, stretched, took all the wood and a window.

"A girl could live in a place like this."

While y
Apr 04, 2008 Jeannine added it
Shelves: poetry
It didn't surprise me that Laurel has become a successful children's book author, because this delightful book of poems is full of fanciful stories, narrating the life of "the girl." Some poems describe eerie dreams, others comment on mundane life and mundane desires (from "I Covet Everything I Own:" "I covet every/ gone year, every wet summer, every early supper/ on a citronella porch...I covet drunk and tired and quietly,/ you. I covet my own thighs last year.") All of the poems have a delicat ...more
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Laurel Snyder is the author of five children's novels, "Seven Stories Up," "Bigger than a Bread Box," "Penny Dreadful," "Up and Down the Scratchy Mountains OR The Search for a Suitable Princess" and "Any Which Wall" (Random House) as well as six picture books, "Nosh, Schlep, Schluff," "Baxter, the Pig Who Wanted to Be Kosher," "The Longest Night," "Camp Wonderful Wild," "Good night, laila tov," an ...more
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