Overview

“When history proves useless and consensus chimerical,” Donald Revell has written, “the poet’s necessity is invention, and this does a lot to explain our century’s preference for revision over mimesis.” For Revell, The disruptions of this century have destroyed old illusions of historical continuity: “The consolations of history are furtive,/ then fugitive, then forgotten.” Invoking such contemporary events as the collapse of communism and the end of the Cold War, he seeks to integrate the political with the personal in a search for new paradigms ...
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Erasures

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Overview

“When history proves useless and consensus chimerical,” Donald Revell has written, “the poet’s necessity is invention, and this does a lot to explain our century’s preference for revision over mimesis.” For Revell, The disruptions of this century have destroyed old illusions of historical continuity: “The consolations of history are furtive,/ then fugitive, then forgotten.” Invoking such contemporary events as the collapse of communism and the end of the Cold War, he seeks to integrate the political with the personal in a search for new paradigms of value and honor.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
A glance at the titles of the first three poems here gives an indication of the sense of doom that pervades Revell's New Dark Ages fourth collection: The Lesson of the Classics...... Jeremiah, and The Massacre of the Innocents. While each represents a historical period, these opening poems are also the weakest. The pieces in the second section, however, show Revell's strengths as a poet as he alternates poetic lines with short prose passages, and manipulates language syntactically to produce surreal effects: Appetite of the gunman / in the church roof / trains upon his wife/ the remorse fugue the broach / of police injury. Revell does not always delight in such wordplay, however. Even in the final section, in which his poems assume contemporary settings and he permits more private memories to enter in, he often succumbs to didactic, moralizing reflections. The constant political message lurking beneath the surface of the poetry is not only strained, but viewed from afar-whether it has to do with the Cold War, the late massacres in China, or more often than not, some unspecific revolution. Oct.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780819572158
  • Publisher: Wesleyan University Press
  • Publication date: 3/1/2011
  • Series: Wesleyan Poetry Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 58
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

DONALD REVELL was a National Poetry Series winner in 1982 for his book of poems, From the Abandoned Cities, and won a Pushcart Prize in 1985. His most recent collection, New Dark Ages (1990), won the PEN Center USA West Award for Poetry. He teaches English at the University of Denver.
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Table of Contents

Muse 1
I Marina Pacifica
The Lesson of the Classics 5
Jeremiah 6
The Massacre of the Innocents 7
Epigone 8
On the Cards 9
Heat Lightning 10
1990 11
The Deposed 12
Anniversary of Many Cities 13
The Next War 14
Benzene 15
II Erasures
City More Than I Suspected 19
The Other The Wings 21
Sirius 22
The Hotel Sander 24
A Type of Agnes 25
You See Corsica 27
Explicit Vita 29
And Nothing But 30
The Ringrose 31
Erasures 32
III Apart from Solitude
Mayakovsky Welcomed to America, 1925 35
Apart from Solitude 36
An Episode of the Great Awakening in New England 37
Of Africa 38
Warm Days in January 39
On the Cape 41
Last 43
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