The eagerly awaited, brilliant, and engaging new poems by Tony Hoagland, author of What Narcissism Means to Me
The parade for the slain police officer
goes past the bakery
and the smell of fresh bread
makes the mourners salivate against their will.
—from "Note to Reality"
Are we corrupt or innocent, fragmented or whole? Are responsibility and freedom irreconcilable? Do we value memory or succumb to our forgetfulness? Application for Release from the Dream, Tony Hoagland's fifth collection of poems, pursues these questions with the hobnailed abandon of one who needs to know how a citizen of twenty-first-century America can stay human. With whiplash nerve and tender curiosity, Hoagland both surveys the damage and finds the wonder that makes living worthwhile. Mirthful, fearless, and precise, these poems are full of judgment and mercy.