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9780374531737

Sleeping It Off in Rapid City Poems, New and Selected

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780374531737

  • ISBN10:

    0374531730

  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-03-31
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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Summary

The first broad retrospective of August Kleinzahler's career,Sleeping It Of in Rapid Citygathers poems from his major works along with a rich portion of new poems that visit different voice registers, experiment with form and length, and confirm Kleinzahler as among the most inventive and brilliant poets of our time. Travel--actual and imaginary--remains a passion and inspiration, and in these pages the poet also finds "This sanctified ground / Here, yes, here / The dead solid center of the universe / At the heartof the heart of America." August Kleinzahlerwas born in Jersey City in 1949. He is the author of ten books of poems and a memoir,Cutty, One Rock.His most recent book of poetry,The Strange Hours Travelers Keep, was awarded the 2004 Griffin Poetry Prize. He lives in San Francisco. Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award A Northern California Book Award Finalist ANew York Times Book ReviewNotable Book APittsburgh Post-GazetteBest Book of the Year ASt. Louis Post-DispatchBest Book of the Year ASan Francisco ChronicleBest Book of the Year The first broad retrospective of August Kleinzahler's career,Sleeping It Off in Rapid Citygathers poems from his major works along with a rich portion of new poems. Within this collection, Kleinzahler visits different voice registers, experiments with form and length, and confirms his writing among the most inventive of his time. Travel--actual and imaginary--remains a passion and inspiration, and in these pages the poet also finds "This sanctified ground / Here, yes, here / The dead solid center of the universe / At the heart of the heart of America." "Many poets try to sound tough, or masculine, or self-conscious about manhood, and fail miserably: what qualities let Kleinzahler succeed? His eye, and his ear--he is, first and last, a craftsman, a maker of lines--but also his range of tones, and his self-restraint: he never says more than he should, rarely repeats himself and keeps his focus not on the man who speaks the poems (and whose personality comes across anyway) but on what that man sees and on what he can hear."--Stephen Burt,The New York Times Book Review "Many poets try to sound tough, or masculine, or self-conscious about manhood, and fail miserably: what qualities let Kleinzahler succeed? His eye, and his ear--he is, first and last, a craftsman, a maker of lines--but also his range of tones, and his self-restraint: he never says more than he should, rarely repeats himself and keeps his focus not on the man who speaks the poems (and whose personality comes across anyway) but on what that man sees and on what he can hear."--Stephen Burt,The New York Times Book Review"Sleeping It Off in Rapid Cityfeatures on its cover a nighttime photograph of a White Castle hamburger franchise. Like White Castle's pint-size hamburgers, Mr. Kleinzahler's poems are of uncertain if not dubious nutritional value. And while there is nothing made-to-order about them, his poems arrive salty and hot; you'll want to devour them on your lap, with a stack of napkins to mop up the grease. Mr. Kleinzahler is an American eccentric, a hard man to pin down. Born in New Jersey, he writes poems that have a pushy exuberance and an expert recall of that state's tougher schoolyards--of bullies with names like Stinky Phil and of 'fire trucks and galoshes, / the taste of pencils and Louis Bocca's ear.' And he writes with elegiac insight about life's losers, the people he calls 'strange rangers,' t

Author Biography

August Kleinzahler was born in Jersey City in 1949. He is the author of ten books of poems and a memoir, Cutty, One Rock. His most recent book of poetry, The Strange Hours Travelers Keep, was awarded the 2004 Griffin Poetry Prize. He lives in San Francisco.

Table of Contents

Praise for August Kleinzahler:
 
"[Kleinzahler's] scope is large, his diction wildly exact, his line inventive, his means varied, and he never condescends." --Maureen N. McLane, The New York Times Book Review
 
"Erudite, restless, intellectually curious, alert to what goes on around him from the moment he opens his eyes in the morning, [Kleinzahler] brings to mind Frank O'Hara . . . Wonderful." --Charles Simic, The New York Review of Books
 
"Kleinzahler mixes the pungent and the delicate, the literary and the colloquial, to create a fine, technicolor-like excess." --John Palattella, The Los Angeles Times
“Kleinzahler is perhaps America’s most linguistically gifted poet . . . Exquisitely fresh.” —John Freeman, San Francisco Chronicle

“[Kleinzahler] is, first and last, a craftsman, a maker of lines . . . He never says more than he should . . . and keeps his focus not on the man who speaks the poems . . . but on what that man sees and on what he can hear.”—Stephen Burt, The New York Times Book Review

“Offbeat, off hand, subtle, and unsettling . . . Longer acquaintance with Kleinzahler’s verse brings greater admiration.”—The Voice Literary Supplement

 

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