Pocket Sundial

Lisa Zeidner, Author University of Wisconsin Press $14.95 (104p) ISBN 978-0-299-11924-9
A scientist tries to elucidate the concept of time to a caveman who has been revivified in the 20th century (``at this rate it will take years / to explain year ''); a woman shoplifts because she associates certain objects with her late husband; a daughter attempts to reconcile memories of abusive parents with her present benign relationship with them. Zeidner ( Talking Cure ) observes in the hilarious ``Dementia Colander'': ``in life most things are erosions, / not earthquakes, / most changes / not even slow but undetectable / until much later, / when hindsight makes an epiphany / of one note in the symphony. / For most of us, life itself / is a shaggy dog joke / with a disappointing punchline.'' Because Zeidner's perspective is always changing, her poems are dynamic and unpredictable, and she successfully conveys a sense of the fluid nature of time and viewpoint in these ``pocket sundials.'' Zeidner infuses verses with warmth, dry wit and a celebratory sense of the subtleties of language, punning shamelessly and drawing metaphors to their illogical extremes. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 04/03/2000
Release date: 10/01/1988
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FORMATS
Hardcover - 89 pages - 978-0-299-11920-1
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