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Editorial Reviews

Patricia Monaghan
In this elegant, intelligent, witty collection--winner of this year's Vassar Miller prize in poetry--Hamby frequently favors a six-beat, alexandrine-like line in couplets that in her hands become turbocharged, multilingual compendia. Her subject is often the miraculous discovered in the ordinary: "There is always a miracle if you know / where to look," she reminds us. There is nothing remotely ordinary, however, about the language in which she reveals that miracle. A wildly fluent poem about eggs, for instance, brings us from breakfast through Piero della Francesca's painting of Christ and Faberge's "begemmed and enameled concoctions" to recipes for meringue and then lands squarely, finally, at the miracle of life itself. Once started, it's hard to stop reading Hamby, so tightly does she knit each line of her rich, full, strong poetry to the next.
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Product Details

Table of Contents

The Language of Bees 3
Betrothal in B minor 5
Ova 7
Eating Bees 9
The Ovary Tattoo 10
Venus Speaks 12
Invention 14
Regarding Insects in General 17
Killer Bees Are Sighted in Belize 18
Toska 20
Arpeggio, Archipelago, Arpege 22
I Hear a Samba 24
The Dada of Bees 26
A Farewell to Beekeeping 27
James Atkins, Irlandese 31
Le Stelle Sono Innumerevoli 34
Al Fresco, Caro 35
St. Barbara of the Dog Bite 37
St. Anthony of the Floating Larynx 40
The Beautification of St. Lucy 43
St. Clare's Underwear 46
Borromini's Facade 48
Wild Greens 51
Nose 53
Skin 55
Delirium 56
Dust 58
Deception 61
Doubt 64
To Italy 69
Mrs. Pidgeon Writes to Her Daughter 72
Captain Walsh Contemplates a Storm in the Bay of Biscay While Keats and Severn Cower Below 74
Lt. Sullivan Amuses Keats during the Quarantine in the Bay of Naples (with Interjections by Death) 75
Keats' Disease Addresses Him in the Voice of Mr. Lovelace, Nemesis of Clarissa Harlowe in the Eponymous Novel Which Keats Finishes Reading (in Nine Volumes) the Night Before He Leaves Naples 79
Keats and Severn See Something Unusual 81
Dr. Clark Examines Keats upon His Arrival in Rome 82
Signora Angeletti Discusses Her Two Boarders (with recipe) 84
Lt. Isaac Marmaduke Elton and Keats on La Principessa Borghese (nee Pauline Bonaparte), Marble and Flesh 88
The Autopsy of John Keats 89
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