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Jesme's third collection is a sweeping book made up of serial poems-long sequences of short, tonally related lyrics-that meditate on pastoral, aesthetic and domestic themes. The two longest series, "The Little Hour," and "I will not let thee go except thou bless me," delve deep into the sensuality of brief, everyday occurrences with a radiant clarity. The speaker of "In June or July" (part of "The Little Hour") could be talking about the poem's author: "She uses the smallest sensual experience- / her fingers pulling apart the tiny rootlets of peat moss / and then separating the plants." Jesme focuses on and illuminates small experiences. Many of the poems are thick with aesthetic revelry, and while taken singly they can underwhelm, their cumulative effect can be mesmerizing. There's attention to the power of lyrical lacunae, as in the poems of Cole Swenson and Mei-mei Bersenbrugge, but there are also traces of narrative woven throughout, most notably in the opening prose poem series "Lives of the Saints": "I was a boy like other boys, except that I had murdered my sister. There was a lot of atonement required." It's tantalizing, and shows Jesme's gift for creating atmosphere, something she demonstrates throughout these luminous glimpses of various lives. (Jan.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.