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Small Arguments

4.42  ·  Rating details ·  31 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Reminiscent of Pablo Neruda's Elemental Odes, Small Arguments is a stunningly original debut by a gifted young poet. The language of Small Arguments is simple yet there is nothing simple in its ideas. The work touches on the structures of argument, orchestrating material around repetition, variation and contrast. Thammavongsa's approach is like that of a scientist/philosop ...more
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Published December 4th 2003 by Pedlar Press
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mwpm
Jul 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry, favorites
Small Arguments is dedicated "To my parents for knowing the weight of how much". The meaning of this dedication is later illuminated by the poem "The Weight of Salt"...
There are no measuring cups to mark
how much is enough

no scales
to balance the weight one holds


There is only salt in
an open hand

an open hand
that knows the weight of how much
- The Weight of Salt, pg. 15


The poems that interested me the most were the poems that took a line from another poem as their starting point...
Water will never
...more
Chris Hutchinson
Mar 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The number of angels that can dance on the head of a pin is insignificant compared to the
multitudes contained within Souvankham Thammavongsa’s minimalist, lapidary
poems.
Dylan Tweney
May 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Remarkable small poems about ordinary things, but with not so subtle echoes and resonances of what must be an intense personal life behind each object.
Andrew
Jun 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Souvankham Thammavongsa's "Small Arguments" is an absolutely enthralling collection of poems. They show the true beauty that the small things of the world can hold to a careful observer. Fruit and insects are the main subjects of her poems, and yet each one contains much insight and wisdom. There are some truly beautiful words contained within Thammavongsa's "Small Arguments" that must be read! Highly recommended.
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Winner of the 2004 ReLit Award for Poetry.
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