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The Last Usable Hour (Lannan Literary Selections)

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The Last Usable Hour (Lannan Literary Selections) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"Hooray for a writer who can weave presence and absence, longing and loss of longing, into a tapestry of language as rich, honest, and compelling as this."—Naomi Shihab Nye

"Landau registers the intensities of the flesh: pleasure, desire, limitation, and, ultimately, disappearance."—Mark Doty

It is "always nighttime" in Deborah Landau's second collection—a series of linked lyric sequences, including insomniac epistolary love poems to an elusive "someone." Here is a haunted singing voice, clear and spare, alive with memory and desire, yet hounded by premonitions of a calamitous future. The speaker in this "ghost book" is lucid and passionate, even as everything is disappearing.

blame the egg blame the fractured stones

at the bottom of the mind

blame his darkblue glare and craggy mug

the bulky king of trudge and stein

how I love a masculine in my parlor

his grizzly shout and weight one hundred drums

in this everywhere of blunt and soft sinking

I am the heavy hollow snared

the days are spring the days are summer

the days are nothing and not dead yet

Deborah Landau was educated at Stanford University, Columbia University, and Brown University, where she was a Javits Fellow and received a PhD in English and American literature. She co-hosts "Open Book" on Slate.com and is the Director of the NYU Creative Writing Program. She lives in the Soho neighborhood of New York City.

Review:

"The poems of Landau's stunning second collection are dark, urgent, sexy, deeply sad, and, above all, powerful. Grouped into four sequences whose titles — 'All Else Fails,' 'Blue Dark,' 'Someone' and 'Welcome to the Future' — are as haunting as they are indicative of the psychic situation in which the book locates itself; these poems are spoken by a woman on the verge of letting go, giving up, fading away. The poems place us in a dark 'new york/ city of hidden interiors' where the poems' speaker says to a lover (most likely imaginary), 'dear someone I put a shimmer on for you/ tonight I am all sequins all lies// for you I've slit my skirt/ made a neckhole of longing.' Real or not, this affair is dangerous, opening a pit of self-hate, though Landau's abandon is thrilling in the way danger always is: 'dear someone,' a later poems says, 'thanks for the dream/ you leave a deep blue crease/ in the center of my day.' Their speaker isn't sure where these very private verses — or perhaps confessions — are leading, but she knows she won't be coming back: 'I'd say my name to him/ as we crossed the Triboro// I'd say it softly the way he likes it// it would be the last time/ I'd introduce myself that way.' (July)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

Landau creates "a poetry of vibrant physicality, open to joy and to failure."-Mark Doty

Product Details

ISBN:
9781556593345
Author:
Landau, Deborah
Publisher:
Copper Canyon Press
Subject:
Single Author / American
Subject:
Poetry-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20110631
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Pages:
96
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » Featured Titles

The Last Usable Hour (Lannan Literary Selections) Used Trade Paper
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Product details 96 pages Copper Canyon Press - English 9781556593345 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "The poems of Landau's stunning second collection are dark, urgent, sexy, deeply sad, and, above all, powerful. Grouped into four sequences whose titles — 'All Else Fails,' 'Blue Dark,' 'Someone' and 'Welcome to the Future' — are as haunting as they are indicative of the psychic situation in which the book locates itself; these poems are spoken by a woman on the verge of letting go, giving up, fading away. The poems place us in a dark 'new york/ city of hidden interiors' where the poems' speaker says to a lover (most likely imaginary), 'dear someone I put a shimmer on for you/ tonight I am all sequins all lies// for you I've slit my skirt/ made a neckhole of longing.' Real or not, this affair is dangerous, opening a pit of self-hate, though Landau's abandon is thrilling in the way danger always is: 'dear someone,' a later poems says, 'thanks for the dream/ you leave a deep blue crease/ in the center of my day.' Their speaker isn't sure where these very private verses — or perhaps confessions — are leading, but she knows she won't be coming back: 'I'd say my name to him/ as we crossed the Triboro// I'd say it softly the way he likes it// it would be the last time/ I'd introduce myself that way.' (July)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by ,
Landau creates "a poetry of vibrant physicality, open to joy and to failure."-Mark Doty
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