Monday, January 23, 2012

"Rattle: Poetry for the 21st Century" Reviews Four Way Books' "Blinking Ephemeral Valentine" by Joni Wallace

"The images are meant to be inhaled deeply, like a mind-bending drug. Reading this volume, sometimes I felt like I was in a theater, watching a beautifully conceived and executed animation. The poems have a narrative element in a hybrid-cinematic sense, an original blend of imagism, narrative and language poetry. Wallace’s mothers could be H.D. and Gertrude Stein; her poet-sister Harryette Mullen.

From “Star-Spangled Valentine Shagged in Drab”:

I fell hard for the Wide Open,
your scrap yards and tree-lined rivers,
parking lots etched into prairies.
All this inside myself, a broken
bottle gleaming. Tell me a story,
begin with a flag unfurled
and a sun-warmed body of cows,
black/white and black.

Wallace conjures up a defunct television game show, “Let’s Make a Deal,” where participants traded what they had for the possibility of something more valuable, hidden behind a door. They were often disappointed. Wallace’s game of love is quite solemn. What valentines wait behind doors numbered one, two and three? " To finish the review of "Blinking Ephemeral Valentine", go to this link.

To learn more about Joni Wallace's collection, visit Four Way Books online.