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Susan Mitchell"This is a remarkable book that will reward repeated readings. It is also a book of awful things-sickness and suffering and betrayal"
— Susan Mitchell, judge of the Levis Poetry Prize
Poems about Multiple Sclerosis and domestic turmoil are never drowned in the rhetoric of complaint, but seized by language that is intense yet seeks the equilibrium of its own level: "His loneliness is cold water. that ...
Poems about Multiple Sclerosis and domestic turmoil are never drowned in the rhetoric of complaint, but seized by language that is intense yet seeks the equilibrium of its own level: "His loneliness is cold water. that makes rocks shine. Great stillness/ where he is. Then, slowly, birds."
The poems in The Radiant flow brutally from a scarred heart, from "what grows hard, and cannot be repaired." But in the end these are prayers of thankfulness, prayers that transcend desire: ". . . we belong here, where no one is refused,/ in the room we come to at last--immortal,/ irreparable, beyond hope."
Who is that, out in the silky darkness?
What is out there, moving through this cold rain?
Tonight the streets of our ruined city glisten
like an apparition in a black bead dress;
a huge woman lies down along the highway, sighing.
Avapor uncurls and falls asleep in the alley.
The rain spreads its long fingers on the glass
faces of office buildings; the rain's long legs open.
A minute ago I heard the sound of someone running,
clatter of hard shoes on pavement. It almost seemed
I heard the heavy breath of someone running.
Whoever you are, the rain so cold on your skin,
your clothers soaked and clinging, weighing you down.
The rain in your hair. Your white white face.
1. Sea-Meadow 5
2. Old Love 7
3. Sleeping Out 8
4. Vale 10
5. White Roses 12
6. Seawind 13
7. The Ocean Has Been Glass 14
8. Mystery 16
The Rapture 21
Multiple Sclerosis 23
The Attic 24
You Knew Her 30
Hot Wind, Proveincetown Harbor 32
Lumbar Puncture 35
The Meeting Room 38
Curse One: The Wraith 43
Cold Rain 44
Untitled 45Curse Two: The Naming 46
River of Doubt 47
Curse Three: The Riddance 49
End of Summer 50
The Strange Insect 51
Home Fires 52
Curse Four: Orders for the End of Time 54
Deep River Motor Inn 55
The Invasion of Canada 58
Black Cat Waits for Death by the Road 64
A Picture of My Brian (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) 65
Balch Hill 70
For Dora Maar 76
Evening, Race Point, Light Rain 78