The Totality for Kids

Joshua Clover, Author . Univ. of California $45 (76p) ISBN 978-0-520-24599-0 ISBN 978-0-520-24600-3

Clover's long-awaited second collection follows Madonna anno domini (1997), whose inimitable stanzas take in everything from Guy Debord's situationism to New Mexico's WWII nuclear plantationism, and Clover's terrific critical monograph published last year on The Matrix . If what one looks for in a poet is a unique voice, no one else could get away with calling the World Trade Center "twin cruets of jizz and sang" (and placing them "in the time of garbage in the vale of lang"), and no one else could compose a poem out of the DVD chapter titles for Godard's Vivre sa vie and make it beautiful. Hemistichic prose, free-verse sonnets, orbiting text spirals, faux pronouncements, multilingual puns and forlorn addresses to Paris comprise a singular set of ideas about what a globalized first-person subject—"a client of chance where client is the only role available"—might be. The poems take forms that draw toxins out of history ("the ferris wheel where they had garrisoned their horses") and infuse them into 21st-century atmosphere: "the April air with silver quotation marks." It's totally great. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 04/03/2006
Release date: 04/01/2006
Open Ebook - 76 pages - 978-0-520-93909-7
Hardcover - 76 pages - 978-0-520-24599-0
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