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Doubles
     

Doubles

by Robert Polito
 

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Doubles is at once tough-minded and urbane, veering from lyricism to street slang, oscillating with the beat of the American city. As his title suggests, Polito's world is one of doubling, simulation, impersonation, and mimicry—a shrewd vision of urban life.

Overview

Doubles is at once tough-minded and urbane, veering from lyricism to street slang, oscillating with the beat of the American city. As his title suggests, Polito's world is one of doubling, simulation, impersonation, and mimicry—a shrewd vision of urban life.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
As the title suggests, the poems in this collection from the director of the Writing Program at the New School for Social Research are something other than integral views of single subjects. Also uneven, these gritty, urban poems are by turn brilliant and under-realized, scattered through with moments that, like bits of mica in a city sidewalk, draw readers along. ``Doubles'' and ``First Love'' mark two Polito ``poles''caustic irony in the first poem in which the speaker discusses the imagined lives of cloned twin sons, and, in the second, lyrical tension as a little boy enrages and amazes his father, ``His awe equal to his anger/ So that, in the end, he's unable to strike.'' The 12-part ``Evidence'' tells an anguished first-person story of an illicit affair, but the overlong work begins to drift, leaving the reader to wonder what, finally, is ``the story behind the story.'' Still, there are indelible images: a vision of a sexual hell where ``Bare bulbs in the airshaft glow/ Like a plug-in, portable fire from Sears...'' (Oct.)
Booknews
Gathers together 11 of Polito's visceral, sometimes disturbing, poems which have previously appeared in such publications as The New Yorker, Ploughshares, and the Yale Review. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780226673387
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Publication date:
10/28/1995
Series:
Phoenix Poets Series
Edition description:
1
Pages:
64
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.30(d)

Meet the Author

Robert Polito is director of the Writing Program at the New School for Social Research in New York. He is the author of A Reader's Guide to James Merrill's The Changing Light at Sandover (1994), among other critical works, and a biography of novelist Jim Thompson, Savage Art (1995).

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