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A Sunday in God-Years: Poems

Overview

In her fourth book of poetry, Michelle Boisseau grapples with a legacy of misery and longing that is both personal and collective, circling first around a reckoning of her ancestors' history' of slave-holding in Virginia for as many as two hundred years. Then under her unflinching gaze, borders between the personal and universal bleed together.
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Overview

In her fourth book of poetry, Michelle Boisseau grapples with a legacy of misery and longing that is both personal and collective, circling first around a reckoning of her ancestors' history' of slave-holding in Virginia for as many as two hundred years. Then under her unflinching gaze, borders between the personal and universal bleed together.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“A Sunday in God-Years is a fantastic book. Boisseau has composed a suite of historical poems set at the intersection of personal and collective life, a book in which private grief and public sorrow are different aspects of a single legacy, a legacy that’s both a privileged burden and a burdensome privilege, encompassing heart wrenching intimacy and cultural nightmare, the beauty of nature and the fragility of family bonds. In every line on every page of this beautiful and ambitious book, the present comprehends the past ‘the way the sidewalk burns hours after / the sun’s gone down.’ Unsentimental, stunningly alive in sound as well as sense, compassionate, unflinchingly honest, A Sunday in God-Years is a flat out wonderful book, one of the best I’ve read in years.” —Alan Shapiro, author of Old War: Poems “Even a ‘ragged chunk of limestone’ opens up expanses of geological, historical, and familial time in the artful hands of Michelle Boisseau, who revisits her slave-owning ancestry for a reckoning. . . . Her poems are a unique blend of sensuality, rue, fresh insight, engaging candor, anguish, wicked humor, taut lyricism and a pungent dash of caustic.” —Eleanor Wilner, author of The Girl with Bees in Her Hair “The title of this splendid book reflects the tonal complexity of these richly layered poems. . . . Boisseau sounds like nobody else and her vision demands our attention.” —Mark Jarman, author of Epistles: Poems
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781557289018
  • Publisher: University of Arkansas Press
  • Publication date: 2/1/2009
  • Edition description: New
  • Pages: 104
  • Sales rank: 1,208,965
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author


Michelle Boisseau is professor of English at the University of Missouri- Kansas City where she also serves as associate editor of BkMk Press. She is the author of three books of poetry, No Private Life; Understory, winner of the Samuel French Morse Prize; and Trembling Air (University of Arkansas Press), a PEN USA finalist. She is coauthor of the popular book Writing Poems, now in its seventh edition.
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Table of Contents

Birthday 3

A Sunday in God-Years 7

A Reckoning

1 The Debt 10

2 Ruminator 11

3 No Trespassing. Violators Will Be Prosecuted, etc 14

4 Meanwhile 16

5 Reward 17

6 The Subscriber 18

7 Catalogue 20

8 Two Wills in Old Virginia 21

9 Apologies 22

10 Spear-Side and Distaff 23

11 Brown Study 24

12 Field Guide to North American Guilt 25

13 Before the Age of Aerial Bombardment 26

14 Gibson 27

15 Eighteenth-Century Boisseau Farmhouse 29

Fitz Patrick Boisseau 31

Genealogy 34

A Genius for Silence 39

Stones Grown into His Footsoles 41

Found Poem 43

Outskirts of Lynchburg 44

Monstrance 45

The Sad Book of Fun 46

The Good 47

Sandcastle Guarded by a Cicada Shell 48

Not to Mention All This Ferrous Fructiferousness 49

Time Done Is Dark 50

Larger than Life 51

Night Valley 52

Bird Shadow on Window Glass 54

Recriminating Rags of Sunlight 55

Hard Weather 56

Pertinacious Seedheads 57

Inkling 58

After a While, Time Passed 60

A Porchful of Presbyterians 61

Flying with the Eyes of a Satellite 63

& if & if 65

Ode to the Tongue 66

Die Zwei Ist Zweifel 67

Across the Borderlands, the Wind 71

South Dakota Field Trip 80

When I Consider 82

Notes 85

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