I fear I don't have words big enough to encompass the bright world contained in this book.
I have been drawing out the reading of it, so as to make it...moreI fear I don't have words big enough to encompass the bright world contained in this book.
I have been drawing out the reading of it, so as to make it last that much longer. That's what you do with a book of poems this amazing. You skip around. You read page 12 and then jump forward to page 88. You hope that you miss a few, so when you flip through it next week you can be surprised by the discovery of a new one, unread.
I discovered Elizabeth Bradfield entirely by accident at a Bernal Heights poetry reading in San Francisco. She held us all spellbound as we sat uncomfortably cross-legged on the yoga-matted floor. The moment before she started reading, I was wishing it were over. I had heard so many that night and most of them made me regret leaving the comfort of my own couch.
But then Elizabeth read, starting with "Cul-de-sac Linguistics" (p. 73) and all thoughts of leaving and of couches were forgotten.
Interpretive Work is the best book of poetry I've read this year, and possibly last year, too. I feel incredibly lucky to have found it, and I know I'll be turning its pages to rediscover joy for a very long time to come.(less)
You can tell that you really love a book when you're sorry to reach the final chapter, when you crawl through the last few pages, reading slower and s...moreYou can tell that you really love a book when you're sorry to reach the final chapter, when you crawl through the last few pages, reading slower and slower just to make it last a little longer. For me, The Monsters of Templeton was that kind of book.
It's beautifully written, wonderfully imagined, and just when you think you know where it's going, it takes you someplace else, someplace better. It's a fairy tale, a monster story, a mystery, an historical fiction, and a love story all at once.
I was attracted at first to the title, and then to the unusual cover, and the first sentence had me snatching the book from the shelf and trotting it right up to the register: "The day I returned to Templeton steeped in disgrace, the fifty-foot corpse of a monster surfaced in Lake Glimmerglass."
With a build-up like that, you usually expect the actual story to disappoint. But not so with Templeton. It was an absolute delight to read, and it's staying on my bookshelf so I can read it again and again.(less)
It is possible for words to break your heart. These poems did their work and then stuck in the cracks, haunting in the middle of the night until I wok...moreIt is possible for words to break your heart. These poems did their work and then stuck in the cracks, haunting in the middle of the night until I woke up and read more, now, again.
I picked up The Fever Almanac several months ago, with an armful of other poetry. Somehow I let it languish on a shelf for too long, and only recently re-discovered it and realized I hadn't yet read it.
I knew nothing about Kristy Bowen when I opened to the first poem, but I was entranced before I was even halfway through and since then I've just wanted more, more, more.
These poems are lush landscapes from a dark underwater world, peopled by lost girls with delicate wrists, floating in blue dresses with whisps of stormclouds caught in their hair. Beautiful, beautiful.
Part of the magic of Bowen's craft is that you don't fully understand what's going on half the time, but you don't care. You want to remain underwater with her, exploring blue bottles and hunting below the sink for mouse skeletons.
I have let the reading of this book drag on and on so as to prolong it, but I'm done now, and am left feeling wistful and melancholy but oh, so satisfied.
Definitely a Bowen convert from this day forward...