Lyn Hejinian is one of the most prominent figures in contemporary American poetry. Living and writing in the Bay Area for most of her life, she is a professor, translator, poet, etc. Recently she has worked with musician John Zorn on a cross-media project, and her books My Life
and Writing Is an Aid to Memory
have helped place her in the pantheon of the avant-garde working in the U.S. The Language of Inquiry
is a collection of Hejinian's essays and what might otherwise also be called miscellany (aphorisms, interviews, etc.) if not for Hejinian's brilliant way of exploring poetry and poetics. Included are reflections on community, women, writing, translating, and language. Hejinian's language works
— it challenges and engages. This collection of writings, spanning from the mid-seventies to the nineties, is both inspirational and instructive. If at times Hejinian's work has weathered the charge of being less accessible than other more mainstream poetry/poets, these texts may help interested readers gain a better grasp on her intentions and possible directions that readers and writers can pursue.