Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Polonius on acid: my first blurb

I wrote about blurbs in a previous post.* Now at last I can offer one I've written. It's my first and for a book I admire, Eros & (Fill in the Blank) by Charles Freeland (BlazeVOX). So okay, Freeland's publication isn't about me.

Eh. Tell it to Charles. I'm reprinting my observation that Charles Freeland is "Polonius on acid." It took a few quick passes here and there to write this one paragraph, a few passes then a day of rewriting to create an short equivalent of the 127-page paragraph; to serve as a copywriter, a marketer, a snake oil salesman -- hey -- poetry can be definfed as snake oil, a shiny panacea for the soul. Maybe the next blurb will be easier to write but for now, writing this was for me writing a condensed review THAT WOULD BE ON THE BACK COVER OF A BOOK. Ya know?

So here goes. {For fair balance, as the FDA would say in its specifications on pharmaceutical advertising, I include the other two blurbs.}

Charles Freeland dances under moonlight. The landscape for his delightfully curious insights is visual, symbolic, a work of art and an advanced warning dusted with allusion, playfulness and literary confidence. A poem in prose, an epistolary project, Eros unspools advice wise, subversive and funny; very funny. Sentences tumble, one after the other. Truth rides shotgun to contradiction. I suspect James Joyce has placed an advanced order for this book-length paragraph of lilting depth and joy, as well as Charles Bernstein, Charles Simic, Lee Ann Brown, Frank O'Hara and assorted scholastics and philosophers. Freeland is Polonius on acid. Unlike Polonius, the author is advantaged by having read the tragedy's fifth act while simultaneously knowing pleasures of sensation and the “fact of the human body. Its shape like the modest ginger root.” As only passionate careful writers can do, Freeland offers his readers – you and you and you – his brimming heart on his well-tailored sleeve. On our “advanced planet” Psyche is in danger, Eros cautions – though worth much regard. How bright Freeland's moon. -- Sarah Sarai, author of The Future Is Happy

Freeland's virtuosic proem embarks on an existential madrigal studded with fulgurate reflections, a literary eclair where moments of sharp simplicity will not brace us for constant intimate impact. There are no respites in this single exhalation, both irremediable and brassy in its delivery. Conspicuous blanks are as purloined as the thought-objects that populate this wordscape. -- Kane X. Faucher, author of Jonkil Dies (A Mesophysical Eulogy) and The Vicious Circulation of Dr. Catastrophe

Charles Freeland’s poetic voice is that rarity of philosophical posits intertwined with a language of emotional accord. Eros & (Fill in the Blank) contains poetry of invention, reinvention, musical decency drawing the reader into Freeland’s specialized poetic language. It involves the reader in the aspectual protocol of following the poet’s patterned thought, of allowing for spatial interpretation to engage and familiarize one with the presence of greatness in a work of art. -- Felino A. Soriano, author of 15 collections of poetry, including Various Angles of the Interpretation Paradigm

My post,
Blurb and Be Blurbed, or, as ye blurb . . .


  1. Enjoyed. Re: the blurb: shouldn't "advanced order" read "advance"? (ready to be so so wrong)

  2. I can't believe I used the word 3 freaking times in one paragraph. I wouldn't let a writer get away with advanced order (me, as a copyeditor) although there may have clever justification in mind at the time. I'm changing it because I need to be humbled.

  3. (as bearer of bad news awaits beheading)

  4. With all due respect, it's not about you. Everyone makes mistakes. We all find the mistakes. Erratum If you read me or any writer to find my mistakes, well . . .

  5. No, no! I read in the hopes of beheadment, of course. Sheesh, I was only kidding.
    :) PG

  6. Honored to be mentioned on your beautiful blog, Sarah. And yeah! no better definition for poetry than snake oil. I'm going to steal that.