Go Giants

Overview

An inventive new collection by the writer whom Colm Tóibín called “an assured and brilliant voice in Irish poetry.”Go Giants, Nick Laird’s stunning third volume of poetry, is full of "epic ambition." In a collection that’s "easily his most accomplished to date…[Laird] gives everything of himself in a poetry as expansive and thought-provoking as his considered response to an infinitely complicated universe needs it to be" (The Guardian). Laird boldly engages with topics ranging from fatherhood and marriage to mass...

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Go Giants: Poems

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Overview

An inventive new collection by the writer whom Colm Tóibín called “an assured and brilliant voice in Irish poetry.”Go Giants, Nick Laird’s stunning third volume of poetry, is full of "epic ambition." In a collection that’s "easily his most accomplished to date…[Laird] gives everything of himself in a poetry as expansive and thought-provoking as his considered response to an infinitely complicated universe needs it to be" (The Guardian). Laird boldly engages with topics ranging from fatherhood and marriage to mass destruction and the cosmos. Go Giants is a brash, brave, and wildly imaginative new collection.
From Go Giants:Go in peace to love and serve the.
Go and get help. Go directly to jail.
Go down in flames. Go up in smoke.
Go for broke. Go tell Aunt Rhody.
Go tell the Spartans. Go to hell.
Go into detail. Go for the throat.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Though Laird (On Purpose) now lives in New York, his third poetry collection looks back insistently to his youth in Northern Ireland, and to the modes and the literature of Ireland and the U.K. Laird’s background can get him compared to Paul Muldoon, but a closer analogue is Glyn Maxwell, whose almost populist ease, and occasional swerves into mystery, Laird shares: his casual fluency, its sense of conversation among the ancient past, English books, Irish towns, and contemporary urbanity may charm or baffle Americans. The two-part collection begins with a miscellany—a delightful light poem of marital love (“Talking in Kitchens”), and another on pregnancy (Laird is married to the novelist Zadie Smith), a whimsical list of clichés (the title poem), a crushing and memorable anecdote about a girl bullied at school. Of “The Future,” Laird writes, “I can tell you that the organizing principle is grief. You will lack weather.” Laird ends with a more diffuse series in unrhymed tercets, its segments named for bits of Pilgrim’s Progress, touching on his own time in New York and Rome; he decides “that the history of history is ridiculous,/ that these specifics were sufficient,” then oscillates between minutiae from travel, recollections of a childhood during the Troubles (“The monotony of always being on a side!”), and metaphysical quotables: “We do as we are told./ The stars are hard and deaf and cold.” (Sept.)
The Times (London)
“Displays an almost child-like wonder in the variety and slippage of language, alongside an adult sensibility of its boundless possibilities and dangers…Here are some of Laird's most successful and mature poems.”
Michael Autrey - Booklist
“One could wear out a thesaurus of superlatives describing his stanzas with their insouciant rhythms and line breaks that appear like a cliff in a cartoon, leaving you momentarily suspended in space with a dizzying view.”
Michael Robbins - Chicago Tribune
“A happy marriage of intellect and economy… Laird’s observations in these precision-tooled poems are deft and graceful.”
Michael Goodwin - New York Post
“Masterful…a work of scholarship and a labor of love.”
Troly Jollimore - The Washington Post
“Streetwise, edgy and downright cool…. History, Greek myths, personal gossip, library carrel graffiti and the general ephemera of contemporary urban existence all find their way into [Flynn’s] elegant assemblages.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393347449
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/9/2013
  • Pages: 80
  • Sales rank: 780,627
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Nick Laird

Nick Laird is the author of two previous collections of poetry, On Purpose and To a Fault. His honors include the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature and the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize. Born in Ireland, he lives in New York and teaches at Princeton University.

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