Domestic Interior


The poems in Domestic Interior describe the private and sometimes secret spaces of marriage, parenthood, and knowledge.

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Domestic Interior

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The poems in Domestic Interior describe the private and sometimes secret spaces of marriage, parenthood, and knowledge.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

Don't let the bland title fool you: in her second book, Brown cuts through pretension with a voice like a whip. Militantly lowbrow, she would rather be perverse than false: she is not one to avoid negative feelings. Her favorite topic is class (one poem takes on private school; another, domestic abuse)-not just the hypocrisy of the privileged but also the reverse snobbery of the underdog, for she is aware that the competition is waged from both sides. Her funniest poems are about work (she is employed as a public library manager in California): "I will guide you between worlds-take this-here it is-/But now I must go./Now there is someone else who needs/That stupid trashy book by a misguided author-freak that everyone's reading./Yes, we have it./I give it with no advice and no opinion." Her most affecting poems are about motherhood: "I/go back to the house that lets me take care of it,/unlike the boy who will not let me hug him." These poems engage because they depict human relations with a profound honesty. For all poetry collections.
—Ellen Kaufman

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822959977
  • Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
  • Publication date: 8/5/2008
  • Series: Pitt Poetry Series
  • Pages: 83
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Stephanie Brown is the author of Allegory of the Supermarket. She has published numerous poems in the American Poetry Review, and her work has been selected for the anthologies American Poetry: The Next Generation; Body Electric: Twenty-Five Years of America's Best Poetry; and four editions of The Best American Poetry. The recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, Brown is a public library branch manager in Orange County, California.

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Table of Contents

Pt. I Neighbors

I Observe This Morphic Field 3

Domestic Interior 4

Private School 5

Bougainvillea 7

Neighbors in Their Own Bunkers 8

How Could We Decorate a Haunted House? 9

Calm Down! 10

Library 11

Saying Good-bye to the World War II Generation 13

No Irish Need Apply 15

Massachusetts 17

Pt. II Education

"Liking Something Is Not Enough" 21

Diagnosis: Psychosis 23

Time, Waste of 25

See, e.g., Hildegarde, Fatima, Blake, McLuhan 26

Invective 27

Prescription Pills 29

Snobs 30

Marble Obelisk 31

Education 32

Pt. III Folie a Deux

Pension, Venezia 37

Ten Years 39

The Temper 41

The Alcoholic and the Ball and Chain 42

Legal Separation 43

John Barleycorn 44

After the End, Hope for the Beginning 45

Peace 46

Pt. IV Not Too Serious

Self-Portrait at the End of the First Half of My Life 49

Not Too Serious 50

The Staff Lounge 52

The Divorce of Mr. and Mrs. Moore 54

Camp 55

The Satanists Next Door 56

Supervision 58

Husbandry 59

Dolphins 60

Roommates: Noblesse Oblige, Sprezzatura, and Gin Lane 61

The Family Jewels 62

Pt. V The Mother

Hope for the Hopeless 65

Indoors 67

The Devouring Father 68

Keeping 69

Coloring Book 71

St. Dymphna 72

Black and White 73

"The Abyss Stares Back at You" 74

The World Will Ask for Your Greed, Envy, and Sloth 75

Good-bye 76

Souls in Purgatory 77

The Mother Becomes the Mother of Herself as Well 78

Notes 81

Acknowledgments 83

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