The ground so far
Preston, Dorine Roseanne
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This poetry collection presents a book-length sequence of lyric poems, accompanied by an introductory essay which investigates postmodern lyric possibilities. Postmodern contributions to lyric poetry have challenged understandings of what the lyric speaker has been and what the lyric of the future can be. In a discussion of the craft concerns that direct the poetry collection The Ground So Far, the introductory essay The Oscillating Lymaprics the´ ends of a contemporary free verse lyric spectrum, in order to praise the work of those poems in the middle which play contradictory linguistic strategies against each other to create the complex tensions of the oscillating lyric. The title of the poetry collection, The Ground So Far, suggests not only physical and geographical exploration, but also distance from the ground, and therefore suspension, risk, the potential for a fall. These free-verse lyrics manipulate language and poetic form to explore the natural landscape and degrees of intersubjective human connection. The poems multiple speaking selves contend with the power struggles of the erotic: struggles among the speakers competing desires, struggles between lovers, and struggles between strategies for articulating the numinous. The poetic speaker is present in these pieces as vates (seer) and poein (maker), forging chiasma by combining moments of vision and moments of making. At times the achieved lyric moment stands within the scaffolding of its development, making utterance itself a more visible subject as the collection proceeds. Throughout The Ground So Far, the poems travel by compression, associative drift, and rhythmic attention toward moments of lyric intensity.
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