It’s Go in Horizontal: Selected Poems, 1974–2006

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University of California Press, Apr 8, 2008 - History - 241 pages
“I hesitate to introduce any such term as 'meditation' or 'reflection,' because this work is not apart from its thinking and/or composition, so to speak—and that, among other things, constitutes its exceptional value. I find the whole work to be a deeply engaging preoccupation with, and articulation of, what life might be said, factually, to be. But not as a defined subject, nor even a defining one—but as one being one. That is an heroic undertaking, or rather, place in which to work/write/live. Its formal authority is as brilliant as any I know.” —Robert Creeley

“Leslie Scalapino's poems probe politics, memory, perception, and desire, creating hypnotically shifting coherences that take us beyond any dislocating devices into a realm of newly emerging consciousness. This work, which defies categorization, is essential for contemporary poetry.”—Charles Bernstein, author of Shadowtime

“Leslie Scalapino is one who is one. A solitary, an original. Hers is a religious poetry in the tradition of Edward Thomas and Emily Dickinson, of the Hindu Vedas and Do-Gen. What other way could there be for someone with a mind so electric, independent and restless except out into the space-time conundrum? Her instrument (for she is also a soul-scientist) is a light beam held by hand in the form of a pen. Because she is thoroughly modern, every moment of experience is interrupted and unstable, accompanied by introspection and sidelong glimpses at the social. The poet here is a horrified witness, a perpetual child, a sexually alert female who keeps looking back to believe what she has seen. I read these poems as they are given: line-by-line, in flashes, and then I return to read each one again. This is a superb and important contribution to philosophy, theology, psychology, and the science of knowing. To have the selection here now, to be able to see the whole trajectory in one volume, is to experience a revolutionary moment.”—Fanny Howe

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About the author (2008)

Leslie Scalapino teaches at Mills College and is a former faculty member at Milton Avery Graduate Program of the Arts at Bard College, the San Francisco Art Institute, and the Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles. Among her many books are Day Ocean State of Star's Night: Poems and Writings 1989 and 1999-2006, Dahlia's Iris: Secret Autobiography and Fiction, and Zither and Autobiography.

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