MJ Nicholls's Reviews > The Intelligent Observation of Naked Women

The Intelligent Observation of Naked Women by Frank Kuppner
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Jul 22, 2012

bookshelves: dropped

I suspect this quest to find poets that turn me on will take a while, so for now I’m switching to anthologies over individual chapbooks and volumes. I liked Kuppner’s novel Life on a Dead Planet so picked this up arbitrarily, and while I like many of the individual stanzas here, these long poems were too opaque, too obsessed with voyeuristic observation and speculation and dreamy poeticising (handy for a poet) of extremely opaque, not specific enough, not clear, see-through, transparent, not focused enough things and people, except maybe in the poem ‘An Old-Guide Book to Prague,’ to interest me. Plus despite Kuppner’s amusing titles the poems themselves aren’t particularly funny, mainly ponderous and dry, or funny in that too-subtle-to-be-funny way.
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10/07/2013 marked as: dropped

Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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message 1: by Tuck (new)

Tuck are you looking for poets writing novels? or poetry? i like adrian louis Bone & Juice, but it is poems, not a novel

message 2: by MJ (new) - added it

MJ Nicholls What 2012 proved is that I don't have room for poetry in my reading schedule. Give me novels novels novels baby.

message 3: by Tuck (new)

Tuck i just finished ada or ardor, i wish i was smart enough to get even 10% of his jokes and illusions, i remember you recommended it highly and it was worth it! now reading an insane, and good, but tedious thelen The Island of Second Sight which has a similar style to ada, but not near as good, or smart anyway. i just finished gail scotts "my paris" too, a dalkey, and she writes most of it in "shorthand" not as easy as it seems. kind of irritating. no prepositions. no verbs at times. compelling though. longer she lives there, the more complete here language becomes.

message 4: by MJ (new) - added it

MJ Nicholls Not read Ada, it was you who recommended it to me! Thanks for warning me off that Dalkey. A book in shorthand? Pfft!

message 5: by Tuck (new)

Tuck oh man, you must read ada or ardor. and try try to get the edition with endnotes by vivian darkbloom, they really help.

message 6: by Geoff (new)

Geoff I think you'd like Jack Spicer. I've been dipping in and out of this the past few weeks:

He's funny and weird and writes strangely. If you're looking for interesting poets, I mean. And you said you were. Right there. Up above. In the review.

message 7: by Tuck (new)

Tuck the vintage international edition from 1990 (though probably UK versions that have the notes, but the notes make the book, believe it or not, either that, or you must be some kind of expert in pan-euro esoteric history of the 19th and 20th cents., on or the other) Ada, or Ardor: A Family Chronicle he really "threw the gloves off" on this his last? novel.

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