cover image Jaguar Harmonics: Person Woven of Tesserae

Jaguar Harmonics: Person Woven of Tesserae

Anne Waldman. Post-Apollo (SPD, dist.) $18 trade paper (56p) ISBN 978-0-942996-81-4

In a book-length poem concerned with expanding and deepening sight, Waldman (The Iovis Trilogy) channels her signature lyric energy through the myths and rituals of the Ayahuasca vine, the plant used as an ancient entheogen and believed to give the jaguar perceptual gifts. "Person woven of sound bands," "person woven of spheres enclosing spheres," "person woven of cruelty," and "person woven of laughter" act collectively as a key refrain in the poem, and its many permutations propel the poem not only musically, but also into the philosophical threshold between one subjective speaker and the myriad external forces that constitute her being. Drawing on everything from the animal to the digital, the scientific to the transcendental, Waldman culls the flotsam of experience to engage the living, perceiving, wounding, and vulnerable elements that make a single entity%E2%80%94be it a singular person, culture, or universe%E2%80%94"seamless and seam-full." Consistent with the poetics of her oeuvre, Waldman's primary concern is attentiveness, and through her language she extends an invitation to "peer into a mystery, its cost/ all creation present to weave itself." (Aug.)