Good Hope Road

Stuart Dischell, Author Viking Books $20 (72p) ISBN 978-0-670-84822-5
Inspired by life in Atlantic City, N.J., in the '50s, this debut book won the 1991 National Poetry Series competition. ``Apartments,'' the series of poems that makes up its first half, is rather familiar fare, presenting the residents of each dwelling in the context of their fears, dreams and, most of all, their losses. While the woman portrayed in ``Wishes'' ``wishes she were older / Or younger, wishes the sky were a little calmer, / That it wouldn't rain on her driving errands, / That she wasn't so late for her appointment,'' the man in ``Hates'' ``hates the bosses and oppressors, / Votes only for losing candidates, / Knows that he will never be president / Or arrive at anyone's concept of heaven.'' The more intimate and personal second half of the book, ``Household Gods,'' features writing that is better modulated, albeit heavily influenced by the work of Robert Lowell (in childhood, ``I was Cortez. I was Balboa. I was any / Fool in bushclothes and a monocle, / Preposterous as the rocks were ponderous''). Yet Dischell sometimes creates beautifully spare language: ``He remembers the dark street and the sun / just rising. Beloved demimonde, / That life is gone. In his hand / The crescent moon of a broken saucer, / A torn admission to the domestic theatre. / Under his hat the memory of stars.'' (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/04/1993
Release date: 01/01/1993
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 76 pages - 978-0-14-058696-1
Paperback - 96 pages - 978-0-88748-612-8
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