A Kind of Listening Seems To Be Answering His Sight: Ralph Angel's Exceptions and Melancholies, Poems 1986-2006
Fulfilling the promise of his early work, Angel's new book is characterized by deep consciousness, the rigors of his syntax anchoring his voice. His new poems exemplify what is true of the rest of his work collected here as he summons Self, human presence, from the collision of worldly details. If we exist in the noise of body, and commerce, and community, Angel's work captures sublimated landscapes of deep feeling and spiritual incident.
A poet must try and make sense of the enormity of loss that steeps our life with difficult meaning. The great achievement of Fritz Goldberg's text is that grief remains unanswerable and alluring… Where we might expect heavy-handedness and painful confessionalism, Fritz Goldberg's poems are buoyant, and like the title of her collection, filled with linguistic, frolicsome concentration.
In the middle of it, being riven
apart by a finger, by a stiff tongue probing
the blind bone tail of my spine…
Shit has a history & it's balmy golden
notes off a black clarinet. Damp &…
My eye never filled with blood.
I never asked why
was I drugged and held down. Taken away.
Mesmerized. I wasn't a two-headed dog…