No Farther Than the End of the Street neighborhood poems by Benjamin Niespodziany Okay Donkey Press, 2022 ~ How just recently undiscovered the poems feel in Benjamin Niespodziany's No Farther Than the End of the Street, and how secretly they demand distraction. I've been ill of late, and in this lateness have come to believe that revelation does not come, after all, to those who wait. So I waited, and held, then read, this inescapably freed book. I am weak and want to say things simply. I strain to recall whole silences. I write that love is made of two people telling each other that they have a room at the hotel when neither of them do. Niespodziany takes the nameless and the familiar at face value and lets one mask disguise another. I am weak, I strain, there is joy here. In this verse, a neighborly, twinning joy...and a sadness brought to earth both by the alien mediocrity of grief and by those few doubled things that go through absurd shortages to single out loneliness. ~ reflection by Barton Smock ~ book is HERE
Toxicon And Arachne – poems – Joyelle McSweeney
Toxicon And Arachne
poems, Joyelle McSweeney
Nightboat Books, 2020
Of course, being a weak writer, I want to say rare. I want to say rare in as few words as possible in the direction of Joyelle McSweeney’s Toxicon And Arachne. Somewhere two toothaches are perhaps reunited. Somewhere one is unpinned from the world while feeling in the dark for a donkey born without a tail. I also want to say playful, but no. Sadness loses all its money to sorrow and there is a jovial genius to the trauma of wordplay. I think what McSweeney does is done with what I’ll call, in my lack, the endangered available. Mouth of a gift hearse. Erasure’s only prediction. From such given, McSweeney recreates addendum without precedent. Think of what one hasn’t read, that is being written, and how briefly it will exist unwitnessed. And how fast the work of de-witness. And how suddenly we’re having the dream that just recently we lied about having. I love this work for its slowness, for the uninfluenced offhand of its disruptive healing. Here is a line from McSweeney’s poem PT Cruiser: ‘That’s like, harmonic. Monstrous.’ I am injected, I guess, to vaccinate the new you. Loss has two syllables: loss, comma, loss. The verse of Toxicon and Arachne lives in the present and in the present it took.
reflection by Barton Smock
book is here