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"Glare is a high-energy, relentlessly self-aware collision with the whole of life."?Albert Mobilio, Salon
A superb long poem by the contemporary master of the form, Glare comprises two sections, "Strip" and "Scat Scan." The poem demonstrates, yet again, why A. R. Ammons's poetic voice is a national treasure: by turns cosmic, self-inflating, self-deflating, eloquent, intimate, bawdy, comic, precise?and always unmistakably his own.
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"Glare is a high-energy, relentlessly self-aware collision with the whole of life."—Albert Mobilio, Salon
A superb long poem by the contemporary master of the form, Glare comprises two sections, "Strip" and "Scat Scan." The poem demonstrates, yet again, why A. R. Ammons's poetic voice is a national treasure: by turns cosmic, self-inflating, self-deflating, eloquent, intimate, bawdy, comic, precise—and always unmistakably his own.
A. R. Ammons routinely puts the lie to Poe's famous judgment that the long poem is a contradiction in terms. His series of book-length poems -- Tape for the Turn of the Year, Sphere, Garbage and now Glare -- may have the novel-like ambition to speak from both the town square as well as the soul's dark night, yet he has relinquished none of poetry's expressive music and precision. If Ammons were a pop star, he would be one of the rare ones capable of carrying off a double disc.
At nearly 300 pages, Glare is a high-energy, relentlessly self-aware collision with the whole of life. "I keep proving I'm not god's gift to/the world," Ammons wryly notes, "by trying to prove I am." Knotting commonplace thought into lacerating riddles is his stock-in-trade:
if/I'm not to have a life, at least let me tell you about it, that is, that I'm not having it: that will make me nearly think I'm having it: imagine a life! of words: better than nothing, better, better, bitter-bile better: for what I meant was love: now, don't blubber: poor comfort, such poor comfort: twaddle:
For Ammons, the myriad momentary revelations -- and they come fast and furious in this runaway poem, unimpeded by any punctuation other than the colon -- are always undercut by his knowing too much. Telling about his life will only "nearly" allow him to think he has one, and all the telling comes down to "twaddle" anyway. In Glare, Ammons offers a mind on fire using the ego for kindling; it's a very long poem short on sentiment, yet hardly big enough to accommodate his blistering sentience. -- Salon
Posted January 3, 2014
"Hurry up please!" A voice calls up to a brightly decorated room. "Coming!" A girl, about fifteen, calls. She tugs a comb through her tangled golden-brown hair. She races down the steps leading to a neat kitchen and a dining room. "How is this?" She asks, looking bright and exited, twirling in a sea blue dress. "Beautiful." A head peeks out of the kitchen to comment. The girl bites her lip. "You don't hapen to have any...jewelry...that would fit it, would you?" She asks. A girl jumps out of the kitchen exitedly. "I already picked something." She hands it to her then looks back into the kitchen. "Oh no! Bacon's burning!" She races over to it. The other girl examines the necklace. "Thanks Maple!" She calls. "Any time, Glare" Maple replies. Glare puts the necklace on and runs upstairs to find a mirror. It looked beautiful with the dress. She looked at it more closely. "It's the symbol of Aryllum." Maple says from behind her. Glare jumps, startled. Maple grins. "Now c'mon! Bacon's ready," Maple saus before running downstairs. Glare looks at the necklace's charm, a white serpent with a faint blue shimmer coiled around a white gem in the shape of a heart. She smiles then chases Maple. "So what are you gonna wear?" Glare asks as she takes a seat at the table. "Since when did i have to go to testing day!?" Maple exclaims jokingly. "Since we housed together!" I say. Atleast go to the results. "Of course i was going to those." Maple says. "But don't forget, it's where your heart leads you. Not me, not Spring, not Bone." Maple says, her face becoming serious then happy again as two more people walk in. "Hi Spring!" Glare says to a girl about her age. "Whats up, Bone?" Maple says to a boy a couple of years older than the others. "We were just talking about you!" Bone laughs at this. "Giving the testing day speech, no doubt. Good luck you two. Choose wisely." He says, turning from Maple to Glare and Spring. "But as your supervisor, i must let you know..." he pauses, leaving Glare and Spring curious. Maple tries to keep from laughing. "ALLYUM IS THE BEST!!! " He yells after a minute. "Don't go betraying on us for Pyrithia." Spring shakes her head. "Leaving your section is considered betrayal...wether the results say so or not..." Spring says almost sadly but it is very well hidden. Glare looks at her curiously, wondering why. "That's why i'm not allowed in Pyrithia anymore!" Bone says brightly, not noticing. Maple rolls her eyes. "Hurry up!" She says, pushing Spring and Glare out the door. "Why would anyone join pyrithia anyway?" Spribg says, soft of nervously. "They're so reckless and dangerous...i guess they do have some friendly people..." Glare watches spring as she says this. "Then again, thats what they say about us. Bone told me yesterday." Glare comments. "They may not be all that bad." Spring shrugs at this. "I guess we have to see our results first." She says. "We're here." The two stand in front of a large silver building, surrounded by fifteen year olds and some older people coming to watch. "Good luck." Glare says nervously. "You too." Spring replys, as the large doors open.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 3, 2014