Library JournalA poet of the lonely spaces between people separated by ``a distance you cannot shout across,'' Duemer writes letters home about the ``customs'' of the old world and the new. He's a worldly innocent on the road for no reason, seeking consolation as a means to identity. Scenes from his mini-traveloguese.g., ``Old Men Sitting in a Bar,'' ``Night Baseball in the American West,'' ``Roofing the Barn''recall Edward Hopper's paintings. Touring America, Africa, Italy, and Spain, he gives us glimpses through a train window, some conventional, others memorable emblems of a search for ``the true nature'' of place, of what it means to be ``Not Native but at Home.'' Replacing Duemer's wandering with pastoral melancholy, Fish probes the essence of various rustic scenes (a red barn, black ice, white sheds, a cedar canoe). These dusky autumn genre paintings are fused with poignance: ``The heart is a landscape larger than the palm.'' Her descriptions of impermanence (clouds ``long and thin like frayed rope,'' ``cornstalks jack-knifed/ in the early morning snowfall'') evoke the ruined geometry of Franz Kline, ``blunt/ as a brushstroke . . . the shape of things.'' Elsewhere, intense Browningesque monologues (Jeanne d'Arc, Catherine of Aragon, escaped slaves) transform individual suffering into human tragedy. Frank Allen, Allentown Coll., Center Valley, Pa.
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