Joseph Massey: At the Point
Published 15 May 2011
Paperback, 103pp, 8.5x5.5ins, £8.95 / $15
In At the Point, Joseph Massey's second full-length collection of poems, memory gives way to edges and angles, to "Sound heaped/on sound," to spaces that "make the shade/tangible" as words arrange a place for the actual.
Download a sample PDF from this book here.
"Massey's poems are detailed and luminous, their nodes and clusters radiant. Light carves and bends, nudges and steels, dredges and etiolates. The eye in this illumined world is searching and unflinching as it surveys the microclimate landscapes of the northern California coast. But more than any environmental image, linguistic soundscapes hold sway. Massey, quite simply, has the surest ear of anyone now writing. A microtonal master, his handling of melopœia is astonishingly subtle and precise. I find myself holding my breath as I read, the better to listen to the intricacies of echo even in the inner ear." —Craig Dworkin
"Joseph Massey makes me feel good about poetry. Here, "the sun
drums through, glazing the nouns, the names". Too much of our poetry
is written by fools peering through a keyhole at the world. Massey's attention
to the transient world give us whiffs of gasoline on the wind, paint cans
filled with rusting rainwater, foreclosed houses, unspooled cassettes by
the sides of roads. Drunkenness. Skunks, yellow jackets, and gnats. Clouds.
The sea. The poet's commitment is "to think through each word's particular
The Bunsen burner Massey's thought cooks with, to my eyes, has a hard,
Read a review of this book by Stephen Burt in the San Francisco Chronicle here.
Read a review of this book at Drunken Boat here.
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