Synopses & Reviews
Poetry. 1950's icons Barbie, Marilyn, sci-fi tv and the color pink are glitteringly showcased in David Trinidad's latest collection. The poems in Plasticville bring to mind the assemblages of Joseph Cornell, the collages of Kurt Schwitters. Trinidad shares with these artists an almost preternatural sensitivity to the artifacts and cast-offs of popular culture. And like these artists, his bits and pieces accumulate in surprisingly deft, resonant, and often melancholy ways. This is a poet who is able to imbue the commonplace with meaning and feeling while never compromising the integrity of his 'found' material. A fascinating and singular book -- Bernard Cooper.
Vivid and protean, David Trinidad's poems delve deep into the surfaces of things. At first, a reader might think this is a book about collecting dolls and rock song titles, with a sonnet completely composed of monster's names, capped by Greta Garbo arranging trolls under her couch. But it is a book about domestic life, a book about how to live, a book about a special kind of bliss, the bliss of invention, and collecting, and above all valuing the bits and pieces of popular detritus -- whether that be Nick at Night, songs from 60s girl groups, or Barbie's pocketbook -- that constitute our lives. Plasticville is about a special kind of solace: counting up what you have. Trinidad's pastiche of simple, declarative sentences masks a delicately calibrated formal poetic construct. His ultra subtle terza rima, his blended rhymes, and his surefooted diction guarantee that the poems never miss a beat. Trinidad's warm intelligence makes poetry that is deft but true, dazzling but vulnerable, and plastic but classic.
"Plasticville is about the bliss of collecting, invention, and valuing the bits and pieces of popular detritus that constitute our lives. . . . Trinidad's warm intelligence makes poetry deft and true, dazzling and vulnerable, plastic and classic."—Molly Peacock
"Brings to mind Cornell, Schwitters...imbues commonplace with meaning and integrity."...Bernard Cooper
About the Author
David Trinidad teaches at Columbia College, Chicago. He has taught at Rutgers, Princeton and Antioch (L.A.). His previous poetry collection, Plasticville, was published by Turtle Point Press in 2000. That book was shortlisted for the Lenore Marshall Prize of The Academy of American Poets. With Denise Duhamel and Maureen Seaton he edited Saints of Hysteria.