Publication Date: 18/11/2022 ISBN: 9780811229227 Category:

Milkweed Smithereens

Bernadette Mayer

Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publication Date: 18/11/2022 ISBN: 9780811229227 Category:
Paperback / Softback




Milkweed Smithereens gathers lively, wickedly smart, intimate, and indelible Bernadette Mayer poems: the volume ranges from brand-new nature poems, pastiches, sequences, epigrams, and excerpts from her Covid Diary and Second World of Nature to early poems and sonnets found in the attic or rooted out in the UC San Diego archive. The world of nature and the pandemic loom large, as in her “The Lobelias of Fear”: …but how will we, still alive, socialize
in the winter? wrapped in bear skins
we’ll sit around pot-bellied stoves eating
the lobelias of fear left over from desperation,
last summer’s woodland sunflowers and bee balm remind us of black
cherries eaten in a hurry
while the yard grows in the moonlight
shrinking like a salary …

Publisher Review

"Mayer writes the kind of nonsense that makes sense, and sense that is nonsense: I can't think of a better catering device in these topsy-turvy times." -- Daniel Wenger - The New Yorker "A poet of extraordinary inventiveness, erotic energy and challenge, and ironic intelligence." -- Michael Palmer "A consummate poet: would that all genius were as generous." -- Robert Creeley "Bernadette Mayer is one of the most original writers of her generation... All her work is full of brilliant observation, humorous and sometimes astounding conclusions, and amazing juxtapositions inspired by linguistic associations, patterns of movement, chance, mathematics, whim, and imagination." -- Michael Lally - The Washington Post "As an offering of selected works removed from all context, Mayer's newest poetry collection reads like a glimpse into a vivacious mind rankled by incessant stillness and external distractions....Bracing and carnal, Mayer provides an idiosyncratic way to acknowledge changes in contemporary consciousness while framing her work in a new and dynamic light." -- J. Howard Rosier - Vulture "Mayer quotes Vladimir Nabokov, in The Gift: "I seem to remember my future works, although I don't even know what they will be about." In its newness, its remembrance, and its diaristic now, Milkweed Smithereens is a doggedly gorgeous expression of that peculiar, clairvoyant temporality." -- Brian Dillon - 4Columns

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