cover image Remnants of Hannah

Remnants of Hannah

Dara Wier, Author . Wave $14 (69p) ISBN 978-1-933517-08-7

With bemusement and surrealist flair, Wier's 10th collection tackles familiar poetic themes: the search for meaning in everyday life, estrangement from the self and issues of identity and happiness. Wier's prose-like sentences spiral and loop back on themselves down her free verse columns, undercutting their own logic: "if it were up/ to me I'd kill us all to spare the pain." Caught in a Borgesian universe of shifting facts and variable rules, even reading becomes an unpredictable act: "Near the top of each page a new story would begin, go on/ for a while, reach the end of the page, and never end." Elsewhere, a house becomes a metaphor for the uncharted places of the mind, where there are "[w]alls with secret panels hiding vast empty realms." Wier (Reverse Rapture , 2005) proposes an array of other seemingly illogical formal and intellectual solutions to existential problems, including a poem composed of exactly 1,000 words, a poem with line breaks titled "Prose Poem" and a "Pseudo-analysis" when "A true analysis of your character is not possible." While readers familiar with Wier's work are unlikely to find many surprises here, this collection maintains her status in the poetic universe. (Sept.)