Empirical Evidence: Poems

Steve Kronen, Author University of Georgia Press $0 (69p) ISBN 978-0-8203-1476-1
As is common in debut poetry collections, Kronen borrows the voices of recognizable figures: Tolstoy, Lot's wife, Edward Hopper, Aleister Crowley. As the book progresses, the poet intersperses these traditionally inspired poems with lyrical portraits of those closer to the speaker's heart: wife, child, grandfather. Many poems have a strong but unobtrusive Christian sense, as when an infant wakes crying ``and you turned / from your place next to me to feed her / if necessary, but mostly to let / her know that you were beside her and God / was in his heaven.'' Kronen writes about the everyday events that most people overlook and he depicts fear or anger through surprisingly quiet imagery such as snow and stars--ironically, the snow might be in Miami and the stars in a planetarium. His finest poems address even explicit sexuality with uncommon delicacy and gentleness: ``Behind each ear my fingers / Listened to your pulse, and your cunt / Swelled gathering glory to itself, a basket of flowers / In disarray.'' In the final analysis, this uneven volume introduces a promising and sensitive poet not yet able to sustain a distinctive tone. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1992
Release date: 01/01/1992
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