Greetings from My Girlie Leisure Place

Sharon Mesmer. Bloof (bloofbooks.com), $16 trade paper (116p) ISBN 978-0-9965868-1-8
With its glut of lowbrow pop culture references—the “manwich,” Limp Bizkit, the call to “add to cart!”—this fifth collection from the ever-innovative Mesmer (The Virgin Formica) blows past any notion of obscure ivory tower poetics. “Anyone can be angry,” one poem says, “But it takes balls to be angry with William Blake.” The work often seems preoccupied with the interrogative: many of the book’s poems are built around questions, serious or otherwise. In “This Poet,” a tongue-in-cheek examination of the ars poetica, the narrator asks: “Is this poet ‘successful’?/ Is this poet ‘beautiful’?... Will this poet move politely beyond what is required?” The poems feel distracted in a hypermodern, attention deficit–addled manner, yet they maintain a deep focus on subjective feminine experience: “Show me a man who is completely present to whatever he is doing/ and I’ll show you a woman who is a rotten idol of unconsciousness.” And though the collection wants to expose itself “for love of the people,” a number of poems display a mean streak that can be read as cynical in light of their unclear aims. Mesmer’s book functions a series of postcards from the google-able ether, with its countless dizzying signposts. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 12/21/2015
Release date: 12/01/2015
Genre: Fiction
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