Death of a Ventriloquist

Overview

This debut collection includes love songs and prayers, palinodes and pleas, short histories and tragic tales as well as a series of ventriloquist poems that track the epiphanies and consequences of speaking in a voice other than one’s own. Other poems speak to a Beloved and the highs and lows of parenthood and personhood—all with music and verve, with formal dexterity, with sadness and humor, with an intimate voice that can both whisper in our ears and grab us by the collar and implore us to listen.

“What drives ...

See more details below
Paperback
$11.41
BN.com price
(Save 11%)$12.95 List Price
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (15) from $1.99   
  • New (8) from $5.68   
  • Used (7) from $1.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

This debut collection includes love songs and prayers, palinodes and pleas, short histories and tragic tales as well as a series of ventriloquist poems that track the epiphanies and consequences of speaking in a voice other than one’s own. Other poems speak to a Beloved and the highs and lows of parenthood and personhood—all with music and verve, with formal dexterity, with sadness and humor, with an intimate voice that can both whisper in our ears and grab us by the collar and implore us to listen.

“What drives the poems in this wonderfully animated debut volume and prompts the reader’s pleasure in them is the patent honesty of the poet’s voice. In the ‘ventriloquist’ series itself, Fay-LeBlanc creates a remarkable refracted self-portrait, bristling with moments of unabashed illumination.”—Eamon Grennan, author of Out of Sight

“In the words of visual artist Paul Klee, whose synaesthetically suggestive work inspires this manuscript, ‘art doesn’t reproduce what we can see, it makes it visible.’ The turf of these poems is a ‘vision country’ in which our narrator / ventriloquist makes visible (and audible) the world to which he restlessly attends, offering up the ‘voices’ of everything. Formally deft, these poems address the limits and grace of lyric poetry.”—Lisa Russ Spaar, author of Satin Cash and judge

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Subtle and finespun as the strings that move a marionette, Fay-LeBlanc’s lines in this debut lure, guide, and yank us through poems in which “a redstart in the boneset and spotted knapweed” and “eel grass winding your ankles” are always waiting to dance upon the tongue. Whether he’s overhearing a conversation in a tavern or the music stuck in his head, Fay-LeBlanc uses his ventriloquist to raise important questions about how we perform ourselves through language, creating a voice that locates its source in a “Prayer of Glass” because it must hide its true source from us. Fay-Leblanc’s best work draws our eyes away from him, as in “Notes on Colic,” where, in a dream, we suddenly see “The foreman of the pity factory,/ where they produce the tiniest/ violins known to man //...that guy, /who can’t stop itching his welts //...does a little jig /to make you feel better.” The tension that permeates his poetry—what is seen and unseen, said and eavesdropped, true and trickery—culminates in a debut that rings out long after Fay-LeBlanc’s lips stop moving. (Apr.)
From the Publisher

“What drives the poems in this wonderfully animated debut volume and prompts the reader’s pleasure in them is the patent honesty of the poet’s voice. In the ‘ventriloquist’ series itself, Fay-LeBlanc creates a remarkable refracted self-portrait, bristling with moments of unabashed illumination.”—Eamon Grennan, author of Out of Sight

“In the words of visual artist Paul Klee, whose synaesthetically suggestive work inspires this manuscript, ‘art doesn’t reproduce what we can see, it makes it visible.’ The turf of these poems is a ‘vision country’ in which our narrator / ventriloquist makes visible (and audible) the world to which he restlessly attends, offering up the ‘voices’ of everything. Formally deft, these poems address the limits and grace of lyric poetry.”—Lisa Russ Spaar, author of Satin Cash and judge

“Whether he’s overhearing a conversation in a tavern or the music stuck in his head, Fay-LeBlanc uses his ventriloquist to raise important questions about how we perform ourselves through language. The tension thatpermeates his poetry—what is seen and unseen, said and eavesdropped, true and trickery—culminates in a debut that rings out long after Fay-LeBlanc’s lips stop moving.”—Publishers Weekly starred review

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781574414479
  • Publisher: University of North Texas Press
  • Publication date: 2/13/2012
  • Series: Vassar Miller Prize in Poetry Series
  • Pages: 80
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.23 (d)

Meet the Author

 GIBSON FAY-LeBLANC’s poems have appeared in magazines including GuernicaThe New Republic, and Poetry Northwest. In 2011 he was named one of Maine’s “emerging leaders” by the Portland Press Herald and MaineToday Media for his work directing The Telling Room, where he still occasionally teaches writing. He lives with his family in Portland, Maine.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)