The world that Donald Revell ponders in these poems replete with contrarieties. The same verbal playfulness and prophetic lyricism that made Revell a 1992 Guggenheim Fellow in Poetry and a winner of National Poetry Series, Pushcart, and PEN Center USA West awards are in full force in Beautiful Shirt. Here he traverses the rocky terrain of innocence, memory, disillusion, and salvation in a voice at once haunted and elliptical: “This is the world as I have known it./ It has a soft outline and is easily victimized.”
Juxtaposed within a trio of long, introspective poems are shorter lyrics that push the limits of poetic syntaxes and dictions. In all, Beautiful Shirt searches for the true nature of the self through language unfettered by narrative constraints and conventional conceptual identities.
What people are saying - Write a review
Beautiful shirtUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
Revell has found an open form for his writing. Like Ashbery's (but in a far less conversational style), the poems in his fifth book seem to unfold of their own volition, offering a scrolling of banal ... Read full review
Other editions - View all
adagio airshaft amnesia BEAUTIFUL SHIRT bend and error beneath a leaf birds carbomb cold corroded images dark dead death deemed weak subverting destroyer divers surfacing Emptiness is zeal enormous table false flowers father forget Four hymnals freedom gasping genocided gesture motionless glass left standing grows lame hands hour is hanged hurry innocence intentionally left blank John Wesley know no sinners landscape except youth light little born long silk lose buoyancy lot of corroded MEET IN AIX mild lion morning mother motionless but driven numbers ocean orangery Orpheus page intentionally left perfect piety of change playing carols pretty skater rattling river rose hour seawater SECESSIONS spindly oxalis starlings strangers subverting worldly strong swallows fire swarm tendrils things deemed weak three directions TRAVELLER'S GARMENT trees tulip glass left unborn unbuilding and pressure undertow vigil crowned Viols walk weak subverting worldly window wisteria yellow transactions