John Godfrey, Author . Adventures in Poetry $12.50 (100p) ISBN 978-0-9706250-7-6

Godfrey's fantastic and frightening prose poetry, most recently put forth in Push the Mule (2001), finds its formally lighter counterweight in this book of 90 quick lyric hits, only two more than a page long, and often in three- or four-word-per-line tercets that read like serial haiku: "There before you/ Onus of beauty/ Reflect gold floors// Pay the fare/ light among girders/ in fact errs." Many of the images and ideas in these poems do seem "private" in the sense that they never fully resolve, or make their referents clear, but seem to linger suspended like the yellow colloidal drink of the title. One poem imparts the small overcoming of fear "by day/ getting used to/ the food of others," while another hopefully notes that for the New York skyline "There is still time left/ Towers extinguish/ the sky's alright." With affect and intensity to spare packed into these tight structures, Godfrey continues his singular exploration of the surprise encounters the city affords, at constantly varying scales, from "Print of rattan on your calf" to "Wet pavement's earthy spell." (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 02/23/2004
Release date: 01/01/2003
Genre: Nonfiction
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