The Lollipop Trollops and Other Poems

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The Lollipop Trollops gathers the poems - written over several decades - of Alexander Theroux, one of the most brilliant novelists of our age. It is an uncompromising and explosive volume, work of astonishing force and variety. Although a genre by which he has been known thus far only to a few, this book but continues what, taken altogether, including his essays, plays, stories, and fables, he understands to be part of a single vision, the unfolding drama of a mind in action. "Ideas of a certain kind," writes the...
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Dust Jacket Design By Edward Gorey Normal, IL 1992 Hard Cover First Edition Fine in Fine Dust Jacket in Fine jacket 12mo-over 6?"-7?" tall. Signed by Author First printing of ... the hardcover trade edition. xx, 172pp. Black cloth, gilt spine lettering, purple endpapers. Dust jacket price 19.95. Cover art by Edward Gorey. SIGNED BY AUTHOR to half-title page. Book and dust jacket appear in fine, unread condition. The hardcover edition was apparently limited to 340 copies. Scarce signed. "Anthony Burgess chose Theroux's 'Darconville's Cat' as one of the greatest novels of the 20th century. It contains multitudes. It is a story of love, obsession and revenge-and it is a story and celebration of the life of the English language-all styles of writing and demotic species are incorporated in its vast body (I speak of the book at its near Proustian bulk, and of the language). And, it is as funny as anything you'll ever read in your life. "-Ben Waugh. 'In his dazzling, invective-filled novel ''Three Wogs, '' Alexander Th Read more Show Less

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Overview

The Lollipop Trollops gathers the poems - written over several decades - of Alexander Theroux, one of the most brilliant novelists of our age. It is an uncompromising and explosive volume, work of astonishing force and variety. Although a genre by which he has been known thus far only to a few, this book but continues what, taken altogether, including his essays, plays, stories, and fables, he understands to be part of a single vision, the unfolding drama of a mind in action. "Ideas of a certain kind," writes the author, "thoughts of a certain nap, can properly be expressed in no other way, not merely one-take ideas, rather substances requiring a specific form, the way brandy suitably calls for a snifter, absinthe a drip glass, and champagne an eight-ounce 'tulip.'" A variety of voices and visions reflect the alternations of mood, degrees of power, and a broad array of themes, a major one of which remains Theroux's insistent exploration of the mystery at the heart of the creative process itself. The complex of styles, his versatility, incorporates a vast knowledge. Here are occasional poems that explore secret moments of passion as well as sonnets, simple unadorned lyrics, blank verse, jingles, and, along with some masterful Therouvian "triplets," much scarifying satire, forms in their plenitude including everything from closed couplets to bold free verse, from the dissonant to the deeply meditative to the elegantly lyrical. There is mad exactness here, great insight, rapier wit. Theroux has a commanding genius, whether writing of love or sketching a profile or fitting out thoughts like weapons with tips barbed with ferocious signifiers. With his love of words and penetrating way of seeing things like no one else, whether pastoral or political or polemical, he conjures poems out of his fingers like miraculous birds with an instant singing life.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The intellectual tricks novelist Theroux ( An Adultery ) plays in these 129 alphabetically arranged poems are self-indulgent and wearying to the reader. Take the title poem, which begins, ``Matsu, spread out your netsukes . . . '' and ends with reference to Alexander at Tashkurghan. The literary-historical allusions, the intricate patterning of sound, the twisting syntax inadvertently demonstrate one of the speaker's own digressions, the ``need to be / Surely more than what you are.'' For all the showiness, for all the lessons planted in the poems (``The poet is a veteran of the night, / Method the soul of his management, / Drawing lines that you might dream . . . . '') the work finally rings hollow. Subjects range from Wittgenstein to spittoons. Many of the pieces are little (often back-biting) games that have private meaning. Some are misogynistic. Some are vicious: a poem on ``departmental secretaries at Yale'' says, ``Your mouths / Were bigger than your twats and those / Acid green supply cabinets you defended / Like phylacteries from Philistines.'' There is plenty of wordplay here, but ultimately Theroux does not seem to have a feel for the music in the English language. (Aug.)
Library Journal
These 130 mostly rhyming poems, arranged in alphabetical order, glance over a wide range of topics, from Amelia Earhart to cocaine addiction. In the tradition of Ogden Nash and Dr. Seuss, with a sophisticated sparkle reminiscent of Noel Coward, Theroux's poetry leavens common sense with nonsense--aiming not for introspection but for truth and grace. As in all light verse, delight in language is often an end in itself: ``Hand me my populuxe hat,/ Give me my rancho mirage cane./ Sing me a parody, instant hilarity./ I've got a yen to be vain.'' But Theroux's Horatian satire moves beyond wordplay to heap derision on everything insincere and corrupt in contemporary manners. These inventive, seriocomic jeux d'esprit never leave the pain of the ``doom-dark'' human condition very far in the background. A witty introduction and an index of first lines round out the collection.-- Frank Allen, West Virginia State Coll., Institute
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781564780072
  • Publisher: Dalkey Archive Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/1992
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Pages: 192

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