The Paint-Box artists color in Adam & Eve, using every hue & cry of temptation. Because God blends into the darkness the faces keep coming off. --from "Chiaroscuro" With the allusive leaps and improvisational chops of a jazz soloist, Yusef Komunyakaa is our great poet of connectivity--the secret blood that links slave and master, explorer ...Read MoreThe Paint-Box artists color in Adam & Eve, using every hue & cry of temptation. Because God blends into the darkness the faces keep coming off. --from "Chiaroscuro" With the allusive leaps and improvisational chops of a jazz soloist, Yusef Komunyakaa is our great poet of connectivity--the secret blood that links slave and master, explorer and native, stranger and brother. In "Taboo" he examines the role of blacks in Western history, and how these roles are portrayed in art and literature. In taut, meticulously crafted three-line stanzas, Rubens paints his wife looking longingly at a black servant; Aphra Behn writes "Oroonoko" "as if she'd rehearsed it/for years in her spleen"; and in Monticello, Thomas Jefferson is "still at his neo-classical desk/musing, but we know his mind/is brushing aside abstractions/so his hands can touch flesh." "Taboo" is the powerful first book in a new trilogy by a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet whose work never ceases to challenge and delight his readers.Read Less
Good. 2006-Paperback-Used-Good--Shows some shelf-wear. May contain old price stickers or their residue, inscriptions or dedications from previous owners in first few pages and remainder marks.-. -Hall Street Books proudly ships from Brooklyn, NY. All orders are processed and shipped within 24 business hours, Mon-Fri. Expedited shipping and tracking available within the US. Hall Street's No-Worry guarantee lets you buy with confidence!
New. 0374530157 From Publishers Weekly A much-honored poet faces a global canvas in this lengthy, information-rich if sometimes repetitive sequence (the first in a promised trilogy), whose poems consider interracial contact, conflict and misunderstanding in the African diaspora, from Herodotus, ancient Greece and Egypt to modern (not to say modernist) New York. Phillis Wheatley, Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Faulkner's Miss Emily, Perseus, Othello, Anne Frank and several giants of jazz stand among the many whose legacy (evil, praiseworthy or both) prompts at least one poem. The large cast makes the book feel at times exhilaratingly expansive, at other times simply crowded--no poet has used this much history, this many figures and famous names, since Robert Lowell (himself another character here). Komunyakaa won a Pulitzer for 1993's Neon Vernacular: New and Selected Poems, which featured his extraordinarily skillful jazz-inspired short lines. Those lines here serve off-balance three-line stanzas that bear tremendous weights of raw information, and finally carry the book. The best poems either tell unfamiliar stories (Benedict the Moor, in the volume's moving finale) or eschew proper nouns for personal reflection ("In Line at the Bank"). If other verse tells more than it can show, or sounds more reportorial than lyrical, the whole sequence testifies to a skill, and an ambition, that will surely continue to merit national attention. Copyright?
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