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Otherwise Elsewhere

3.87  ·  Rating Details ·  30 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
The expansive, energetic new poetry book by David Rivard, author of Sugartown and Wise Poison

You pay as you go. Mornings
at this point are either like spread sails or (more likely)
spread-sheets—they fill fast. Mornings are fortunes,
but as suspect as a wristwatch running in reverse.
—from "Vigorish"
David Rivard's new collection Otherwise Elsewhere describes the
Paperback, 96 pages
Published December 21st 2010 by Graywolf Press
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Ryan Smith
Oct 27, 2010 Ryan Smith rated it really liked it
If I am tempted very much to say that I admire the complexity and depth of Rivard's poetry, I can only do so while giving even greater recognition to the deftness with which he constructs these pieces, the way the layers are laid out line after line with a subtlety that is its own kind of wit. What is enviable is that this wit is a finely-honed wit but Rivard leaves no trace of his labor, gives no impression of laborious 'craftwork' endured to reach this particular landscape.

That is all to say
May 11, 2012 Nicola rated it really liked it
The poems in David Rivard’s collection "otherwise elsewhere" are as restless as its title. They navigate what at first appears as the extremes of “lightning and gossip,” the hope for transcendence and the everyday humdrum, human realities and banalities, which squash this hope. But Rivard’s world is not binary and, ultimately, he shows the interconnection of this seeking in the everyday.

I especially loved the title poem, which expands the everyday to include the everyone. In this overpopulated
Nicole Zimmer
Jan 21, 2011 Nicole Zimmer rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
First off, I love receiving books in the mail as part of the first-reads program.. brilliant!
I don't usually comment on the covers of books, but I *loved* this one as it is full of old-timey eyeball photographs; very cool. I also haven't picked up a book of contemporary poetry in a while. That being said...

It seems quite a few of the poems are based on ironies mixed in with the Buddhist faith.. a good example of this would be the very first poem "Otherwise Elsewhere", which is of course also t
May 19, 2015 Claire rated it really liked it
Optimistic poems that earn it; complex consciousness. What I found valuable was the utter unpredictability and the strange jumps. Poems that are "difficult" because they know you can do it, reader. Some poems I had to admit I couldn't access but most were rewarding.
Sara Habein
Apr 12, 2011 Sara Habein rated it liked it
Shelves: first-read
David Rivard’s poems often deal with dreams, people lost and remembered, and nostalgia. He is both floating above the scenes he describes and intimately involved. His mind wanders, but in a nice way. I know “nice” isn’t too terribly specific, but it feels apt. It feels like the wandering mind of a person who, yes, writes poetry for a living — a real, live poet navigating the world.

Otherwise Elsewhere is a slim volume and certainly not impenetrable to one not acquainted with poetry in general. I’
Steve Rauscher
Mar 28, 2011 Steve Rauscher rated it liked it
Shelves: possessions, poetry
While my knowledge of poetry rarely treads outside of TS Eliot and Bukowski, I enjoy sitting down with the work of someone I've never read before from time to time. Rivard has an excellent way with his words, painting beautiful verbal images from page to page, but his themes leave me wanting a little more beyond emotional episodes from his personal life over the years. The opening poem that shares the title of the collected works, however, immediately stood out to me as excellent and is somethin ...more
Jan 23, 2011 Angela rated it liked it
The poems seemed kind of abstract and it was hard to understand what exactly they were describing, but I really liked it because it made me think and use my imagination a lot more than if things were spelled out for me.
Matt Margo
I'd originally typed out a much longer review of this collection, but Goodreads lost it, so here is what the gist of it was: David Rivard is a skilled and successful poet, but the poems contained within Otherwise Elsewhere are ultimately forgettable despite how impressive they may be.
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David Rivard is the author of Bewitched Playground, Wise Poison, which won the James Laughlin Award of The Academy of American Poets, and Torque. He teaches at Tufts University and in the M.F.A. Writing Program at Vermont College. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. "
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