cover image Aux Ark Tryptich

Aux Ark Tryptich

Cody-Rose Clevidence. Nightboat, $17.95 trade paper (176p) ISBN 978-1-64362-112-8

The luminous fourth book from Clevidence (Flung Throne) takes a demonstrated interest in gaps and redaction. In the most frequent example, the poet reduces "the" to simply "th," working against the article's purported singularity, and focusing instead on the word as a unit of sound. The first section, "Poppycock & Assphodel," is presented in narrow columns and fragments, often with lines of only a few words guided by rhyme and interruption as much as by sense. There is a Hopkins-esque sprung rhythm throughout that is strong and inviting in this first section; like Hopkins, Clevidence finds tension between wonder at the natural world and the pleasure of artifice: "I resent th' lily its bloom," they write, "I regret th' dawn of its loom." The middle section, "Winter," shines as it opens onto more straightforward emotion: "I do not accept/ this bell in me." In the collection's long third section, "A Night of Dark Trees," the poems often engage with mythological or biblical allusions, which are not quite as stirring as the intricate language in which they play out. Any reader rightly enthralled up to that point, however, will be happy to see this book's dazzling journey to its end. (Nov.)