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Marjorie Garber, “ (Quotation Marks), New York: Routledge, Let it be inscribed here that the Corpse adores Marjorie Garber and that this book is a delight. We also adore Marjorie Perloff, the only other serious poetry critic on our theory diet. We get all the needed critical protein from our two Marjories.

Radu Pavel Gheo,
Numele Mierlei, Bucharest: Polirom, 2008. Blessed be the story-tellers because they shall inherit the ears of the future! Ripped raw from a reality still teeming with unresolved tensions between an undigested adoration of western fashions by the young and the tenuously achieved equlibrium of the old, these stories manage to make this world live, with a sure ear and hand. In one of the finest stories in this collection, waiting in line at the Post Office (La Posta) reveals a universe of misunderstandings and a near-riot ensues. R.P. Gheo sketches swiftly a rich tragicomic world that could easily spill out of control. Young Romanian writers are beginning to create the literature of a unique time and place, and this is one of its best products to date.

Alan Gerson
, Things We Cannot Know, MBF Press, Montgomery 2007, . Alan Gerson is a painter and, like other American painters who wrote poetry, Marsden Hartley, Alex Katz, Joe Brainard, his poems are full of pictures: “Pale sky/ white cat,” “black bird on branch,” “the monkey in the mirror,” but despite all these posing animals, he insists also on “the big picture/ of open geometrics.” I’m not sure what that means, but I certainly can’t see it; it must be a “baroque volute,” to quote another line.

Darrell Gray & G.P. Skratz,
Everything Else, with drawings by Dave Morice & photographs by Shelly Vogel. Poltroon Press, 2012. Everything else is what I've been waiting for. Haven't you? Some of the poems & collaborations of the great master theoretician and practitioner, the late Darell Gray. Darrell was a genius: we miss him and his work, some of which didn't survive, but some, thanks to the diligence of his friends, is being slowly being brought back in print. See the story of Actualism by Dave Morice in Exquisite Corpse, and check out Dave's PoetryComix site. The fountain of Actualism keeps giving & giving & it's getting more and more actual. The Actualist Manifesto is required reading. Poet, musician, and publisher G.P. Skratz did a splendid job with this collection.

John Godfrey
, City Of Corners, (Limited Hardcover Subscription), Wave Books, 2008. The limited hardcover books issued by Wave with the help of subscriptions, are plain and simple, looking retro inside stiff boards. Personally, I have no idea why any publisher still puts out hardcover books: they are ungainly, hard to handle, and they weigh a ton; there is doubtlessly some rarefied market for them, but when is the last time you actually saw someone read a hardback in a plane? Is there life for the hardback after the french flap or Kindle? I doubt it. Anyway, his has nothing to do with John Godfrey's dense, urban lyric poetry, which is a pleasure to read, especially since he publishes little and his work is always worth waiting for. Here is the first stanza of the title poem: "My first trial is hung/ The soul battery charge/ and the predictive/ folded arms/ I hear nothing/ That's what they say." In the shimmery mistery of his poems (like a New York City sidewalk at night after a rain) we get hints of his work (Godfrey is, since 1994, a Registered Nurse) and occasional nods in the direction of the core New York School poets where he began his work, in the late 1960s.

Loren Goodman
, Suppository Writing, Southampton, MA: The Chuckwagon, This is an excellent manual for poetry teachers.

Johannes Göransson, A New Quarantine Will Take my Place, Apostrophe Books, . This is a surrealist with meat on his bones, a Swedish naturalist who has taken language and culture as subjects of map-making. "That theater is now a dog facility./ I have a cuckoo in my truerspiel.../ Send in the horselessness we sang about." The musical physicality of this work reminds of the poetry of the late great Jim Gustafson, a very American Detroit Swede, who wrote fearlessly in similarly muscled sentences. If it's a gene, Am Po can use it. Aase Berg, Selected Poems, translated from Swedish by Johannes Göransson, Action Books, . A terrific young Swedish poet brought into the vivid English of Goranson. "Estonia: the Fat's Stone's Transparent Catatonia" is the sound of music the translator smuggles in.

Rodica Grigore, Lecturi in Labirint, Cluj-Napoca: Casa Cartii de Stiinta, Labyrinths, mirrors, and masks are this young critic’s passion, and she pursues them in essays about the works of Eliseo Diego, Yasunari Kawabata, Alvaro Mutis, Oran Pamuk, Italo Calvino, Michael Ondaatje, Juan Rulfo, and many others. From this author comes also Evolutia formelor romanesti: Intre modernism si postmodernism. Note de curs, Cluj-Napoca, Editura Cartii de Stiinta, 2008. This manual on the evolution of the modern and postmodern novel would make a splendid teaching aid in English. Rodica Grigore knows her authors well, many of whom she has translated (including this reviewer) and her acuity and critical judgment are right on target. It might be unseemly to praise her much, given that she writes so beautifully about my own work, but I would be recommending her even without self-interest.Also: Literatura Universala si comparata, puncte de reper in evolutia romanului universal, note de curs. Cluj-Napoca, 2008: Editura Casa Cartii de Stiinta. One of our favorite Romanian critics’ lectures on the postmodern novel and its myriad strategies.
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