Overview

Strung throughout the book are poems based on the Scottish photographer Eadwaerd Muybridge's Animal Locomotion, a historic photographic document. Pettit uses these pioneering images as the basis for his poetic dreaming, and the result is a poignant, integrated sequence of highly moving poems, studded between other vivid lyrics.

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Overview

Strung throughout the book are poems based on the Scottish photographer Eadwaerd Muybridge's Animal Locomotion, a historic photographic document. Pettit uses these pioneering images as the basis for his poetic dreaming, and the result is a poignant, integrated sequence of highly moving poems, studded between other vivid lyrics.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Combining incisive observation with vivid imagery, Pettit ( American Light ) builds this volume, winner of the Iowa Poetry Prize, around the leitmotif of flight, both actual and symbolic. He explores the soarings of birds, angels, planes; even the music of ``Mighty Sebastian Bach'' effects flight and transcendence: ``What anchors / our bodies are. / So you bless the A Minor / solo for flute and the flutist, / a woman so clearly taken by the lilting / line of Bach she follows completely, / her slim arms ascending, peaking / . . . seeking / release, a way into the cool blue skies . . . . '' Those poems not directly concerned with flight focus on motionphysical, spiritual or emotionalas a metaphor for the human condition, which Pettit views as being in a constant state of flux. And interspersed throughout is a series of verse based on the Scottish photographer Eadweard Muybridge's Animal Locomotion: in a delightful flight of fancy, Pettit theorizes about the experiences and thoughts of the models. Although some of the poet's work lacks a sense of urgency, it is always well-crafted, moving and highly imaginative. (September)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781587291876
  • Publisher: University of Iowa Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/1988
  • Series: Iowa Poetry Prize
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 96
  • File size: 284 KB

Meet the Author

Michael Pettit is assistant professor of the history and theory of psychology at York University in Toronto.

 

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Table of Contents

Contents Woman Jumping from Rock to Rock Sunday Stroll Evening on a Canadian Lake Pavlov's Dog So Long, Tuscaloosa The Flight Path Man Performing Back Somersault Men Wrestling No Birds Sparrow of EspaƱola The Uncompahgre Range Many Buddhists Mighty Sebastian Bach Los Alamos Rush Hour Sparrow Rousant The Beyond Elderly Man Lifting Log Woman Turning and Lifting Train Driving Lesson Virginia Evening Home Again Louisiana New Year National Geographic Woman Emptying Bucket of Water on Seated Companion Man Walking Downstairs Backwards, Turning, Walking Away While Carrying Rock Willows Astral Life Valentine Show at the Lingerie Shop Petting Zoo March Thaw House Move Legless Boy Climbing in and out of Chair Man Shadowboxing Bad Back The Fox Hunt Furnace without End Boat-tailed Grackles Footsteps Star Route, Box 2 Full Cry Girl Walking Towards Woman, Carrying Flower Cardinal Points
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