Soul Make a Path Through Shouting

Overview

Enriched by his own world travels, Cassells draws with equal ease from Greek mythology, children's rhymes, and African-American oral traditions. The result is an hypnotic and rhapsodic interweaving of dramatic narratives forming a single whole. "Cassells's writing strikes a balance between exquisite language and an empathy for anyone who is forced to suffer."?Publishers Weekly

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1994 Hard cover New in fine dust jacket. Brand new. Perfect. Trade paperback (US). Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 96 p. Audience: General/trade.

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Overview

Enriched by his own world travels, Cassells draws with equal ease from Greek mythology, children's rhymes, and African-American oral traditions. The result is an hypnotic and rhapsodic interweaving of dramatic narratives forming a single whole. "Cassells's writing strikes a balance between exquisite language and an empathy for anyone who is forced to suffer."—Publishers Weekly

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Cassells's writing strikes a balance between exquisite language and an empathy for anyone who is forced to suffer. And at first, the two might seem incompatible: the first draws on the resources of beauty, while the second must be harsh and real in order to be credible. The book's themes call for a tough language that can adequately haul the burden of oppression; the author attempts to combine his love of ornate phrasing with scenes of violence, shooting for a new effect, a sort of rhapsody of pain. It's surprising how often he makes an impact. Like Pasternak, Cassells excels at merging a sleeping landscape with a moment of crisis. If the goal is to prod us to remember history's atrocities, our constant shudder through the middle sequence of short poems (such as ``These Are Not Brushstrokes,'' ``Search'' and ``The Request'') validate the writer's success. Soul Make a Path Through Shouting presents a new creature in the bestiary of contemporary poetry, related to the leopard: tranquil, regal and sophisticated, with an eye on the jugular. (Aug.)
Library Journal
Few readers who stick with this book to its final page will emerge unaffected. Cassells, an incredibly strong and courageous American poet who lives in Rome and is fluent in Spanish, Catalan, and Italian, has produced a volume so vivid, so rich in its use of the language, so profoundly disturbing and bewilderingly refreshing that it takes the breath away. Cassells writes always and wrenchingly of catastrophe-the Holocaust, AIDS, the desecration of our planet, Afghan refugee camps, the Spanish revolution-but the horror is always informed by beauty, by the healing process of struggle, by vitality's very breath. Thus, a deaf-mute Jewish boy, forced by the Nazis to clean the street with his tongue, wets a stone and finds there the image of a flower. In war-torn Spain, an enemy soldier approaches a wounded village girl; just when she believes he's about to kill her he presses "into my hand/A perfect berry." Cassells is probably less successful in his tributes to other men and women-expository description sometimes interrupts the flow of his insights. But on the whole he shows enormous promise of making great contributions to our literary traditions. Recommended for all libraries.-Judy Clarence, California State Univ. Lib., Hayward
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781556590658
  • Publisher: Copper Canyon Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/1994
  • Pages: 96
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Cyrus Cassells, author of four books of poetry, is a graduate of Stanford University and has worked as a translator, film critic, and actor. He has received the Peter I.B. Lavan Younger Poet Award of the Academy of American Poets and a Lannan Literary Award. Presently he lives in Austin, Texas, and teaches at Southwest Texas State University.

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Table of Contents

Down From the Houses of Magic 3
Soul Make a Path Through Shouting 17
Marathon 19
A Courtesy, a Trenchant Grace 21
Evening Lasting as Long as Life 24
Sung from a Hospice 26
The Weight of Brothers 28
The Toss 33
Poem for the Artists of the Holocaust 35
The Return of the Living Witness 36
These Are Not Brushstrokes 38
Search 40
The Request 42
To the Cypress Again and Again 44
Night and Mist 49
A Shadrach Chorus 54
Life Indestructible 58
Fleur 66
Coda 73
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