[UCP Books]: Reel to Reel
|US Publication date: 1 April 2014||ISBN-13: 978-0-226-11063-9|
Reel to Reel, Alan Shapiro’s twelfth collection of poetry, moves outward from the intimate spaces of family and romantic life to embrace not only the human realm of politics and culture but also the natural world and even the outer spaces of the cosmos itself. In language richly nuanced yet accessible, these poems inhabit and explore fundamental questions of existence, such as time, mortality, consciousness, and matter. How did we get here? Why is there something rather than nothing? How do we live fully and lovingly as conscious creatures in an unconscious universe with no ultimate purpose or destination beyond returning to the abyss that spawned us? Shapiro brings his humor, imaginative intensity, characteristic syntactical energy, and generous heart to bear on these ultimate mysteries. In ways few poets have done, he writes from a premodern, primal sense of wonder about our postmodern world.
Praise for Night of the Republic
“These meditative, syntactically supple lyrics bring a new level of abstraction and of sophistication to this poet’s work, marking a maturation of an already accomplished style that makes him a poet commensurate with the strange, aching, exhilarating spaces of modernity.”
Mark Doty, citation for the 2013 Griffin Poetry Prize
“From supermarkets to funeral homes, we have made places for us to be. In Night of the Republic, Alan Shapiro imagines those places without us. Does our absence matter? We go in and out of experience and memory, in and out of culture and awareness. What happens when we are gone? This is both a modern and an ancient consideration, just short of crisis and very near to joy.”
citation for the 2012 National Book Award
Alan Shapiro has published eleven books of poetry, most recently Night of the Republic, a finalist for the National Book Award and the Griffin Prize, and Old War, winner of the Ambassador Book Award. He teaches at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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