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32 Poems – Spring/Summer 2005

32 Poems could have taken a more minimalist approach to poetry, as its design and layout would suggest, but instead it touches on every fundamental poetic theme—life, sex, change, death—with the varied imagination of the finest journals around. With a book binder’s precision, each poem is designated to one page, never longer. 32 Poems could have taken a more minimalist approach to poetry, as its design and layout would suggest, but instead it touches on every fundamental poetic theme—life, sex, change, death—with the varied imagination of the finest journals around. With a book binder’s precision, each poem is designated to one page, never longer. Length ranges from Frances Justine Post’s “Nocturne,” which implores the reader to “Wake up from your sleep,” literally, and experience the middle of the night on a small island, to Eric Reeny’s “Graveyard Pharmeceuticals,” an extended metaphor complete in ten lines. Each poem makes an observation not quite like the ones before and after it: a eulogy for a dragonfly; a Platonist in a mini-mart (“She used to refer to a hot dog / as a ‘Soul on a roll.’ Ergo, I replied: // Who wouldn’t want a soul?”); and a fine take on the false hope of spring via The Waste Land, in Stan Sanvel Rubin’s “Marmot Lake,” where “After a season of snow, a season of thaw / comes like a history of regret.” For all its personal tomes, 32 Poems remains staggeringly close to nature…and with more than enough soul to go around.
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