Barry Gifford’s spare eloquence considers such diverse topics as his friend Allen Ginsberg’s death, the art of Vermeer, a cowboy wino, and September 11th in this collection of new poems. Delving into themes of love and death, Gifford offers heartbreaking verse such as “You sleep with my soul in your mouth/When we kiss I can taste it” and “If you can choose, it’s not love.” Although the work as a whole is anchored in America, these poems are set around the world, from Canada to Mexico, from Cuba to England. The poems invite identification with varied people and situations, no matter how seemingly foreign, often providing moments of poignant revelation.
Barry gives an overview of the book:
Barry Gifford’s novels have been translated into twenty-eight languages. His book Night People was awarded the Premio Brancati in Italy, and he has been the recipient of awards from PEN, the National Endowment for the Arts, the American Library Association, the...