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Furious Cooking

Overview

By turns chic, romantic, sardonic, droll, seductive, and in your face, Maureen Seaton is a cornucopia of attitudes and styles, a street-smart, deeply talented woman who wryly contemplates the charades that the self and the world assume - and how hard it is to stay in focus the morning after. It gets very, very hot in Seaton's kitchen and in her poems. As this inventive and imaginative poet states, "Furious Cooking is a stew of accidents and incidents roiling across universes." Seaton creates curious and energetic...
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Overview

By turns chic, romantic, sardonic, droll, seductive, and in your face, Maureen Seaton is a cornucopia of attitudes and styles, a street-smart, deeply talented woman who wryly contemplates the charades that the self and the world assume - and how hard it is to stay in focus the morning after. It gets very, very hot in Seaton's kitchen and in her poems. As this inventive and imaginative poet states, "Furious Cooking is a stew of accidents and incidents roiling across universes." Seaton creates curious and energetic juxtapositions; she revisits violence and assesses its damages. The poet/woman in the thick of this caldron instigates polarities and assumes the roles of inquisitor and heretic, perpetrator and child, painter and artifact, scientist and specimen. She careens circularly through the hypocrisies and atrocities of church and partner, established sanctioned realities, the seeming senseless death of loved ones in this life and long ago.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Female sexuality, Catholic iconography and the New Jersey Turnpike take mischievous transformative spins in Seaton's wry, fervent and mercurial third book of poetry (winner of the 1995 Iowa Poetry Prize). A streetwise, postmodern alchemist, Seaton blends odd groupings of imagery to deliver the reader into new, always intimate, poetic landscapes. In this accomplishment, she calls on a subtle but firm command of craft (most poems are in free-verse couplets or triplets) and an agile sense of play. In "Theories of Illusion," pandas, orchids, humpback whales and quantum physics offer hilarious metaphors for the shifty nature of the speaker's ex-boyfriend, "in his many disguises/ in and around America." Contrasting with this and similarly intellectually rompish poems, e.g., "Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death," are the four resonant, feminist "Malleus Maleficarum" poems, inspired by the Inquisition-era handbook of the same name that outlined actual procedures for trying, torturing and killing so-called witches. Characteristically, Seaton handles this disturbing material with inventiveness (setting one in Coney Island) and radiantly precise language. (Apr.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780877455417
  • Publisher: University of Iowa Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/1996
  • Series: Iowa Poetry Prize Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 88
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

The Red Hills 1
After Sinead O'Connor Appears on Saturday Night Live, the Pope 4
Blonde Ambition 6
What She Thought 9
Cleaning St. Anne 11
Grace 13
Malleus Maleficarum 15
An Unofficial Interpretation of Pieter Aertsen's A Butcher Stall with the Holy Family Giving Alms on the Flight to Egypt, c. 1550 16
Malleus Maleficarum 2 18
The Queen of Jersey 19
Malleus Maleficarum 3 21
Praxis 22
Malleus Maleficarum 4 24
Exquisite Corpse 25
Flash 27
A Brief History of Faith 28
Theories of Illusion 32
Eggshell Seas 35
Secrets of Water 37
Tagging 40
LA Dream #1 42
Will 44
LA Dream #2 45
A Single Subatomic Event 46
A Constant Dissolution of Molecules 48
Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death 52
Called "Crass" by a Suitor during a Radically Conservative Moment in History, Helen Counsels Her Body 54
Slow Dance 56
Self-Portrait with Disasters 57
During the Eclipse I Remember You Sent Me Playboy 58
Swan Lake 60
The Sculpture Garden 62
Toy Car 64
The West Room 65
A Story of Stonewall 67
The Man Who Killed Himself to Avoid August 68
Femme-Butch Dialogue 70
A Chorus of Horizontals 72
Furious Cooking 73
Notes 75
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