Nobody Lives on Arthur Godfrey Boulevard

Gerald Costanzo, Author BOA Editions $18 (77p) ISBN 978-0-918526-92-2
There is an odd nostalgia in Costanzo's ( In the Aviary ) collection. With references to silver Cadillacs, Marilyn Monroe, Patty Duke and Carl Yastrzemski, the poet concentrates on an American scene in places like Hollywood, Las Vegas and Miami Beach and condemns the kitsch of popular culture. For instance, he derides the equation of freedom and justice symbolized by ``Mannikins dressed / to resemble Hayley Mills / and Dean Jones / wrested from the fiery / train wrecks of the cinema.'' Strangely, the poems don't take into account the fact that the popular culture that Costanzo focuses on has been supplanted by new icons and symbols, such as MTV and voice mail. One poem envisions future archaeologists rediscovering hot dog stands in Miami Beach rather than taco bars or the more pernicious relics of the drug trade. The poem ends with seemingly portentous words: ``And since this was all they knew-- / all this much-- /they assumed they knew it all.'' Though the reader is left with the ironic insinuation of the last lines, the speaker has made no reference to the real Miami Beach of the 1990s. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1992
Release date: 01/01/1992
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 77 pages - 978-0-918526-93-9
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