Monday, January 4, 2010


Some Coles' notes. There, I said it. So sue me. Coles, here, is a poet of nostalgia. Interior concern, even obsession, drives the lyrics. In the best poems, the reader's treated to loving suggestion, as in "you moved warily/Inside your clothes, as in woods" (from "What I So Cherish"); in the worst poems, the reader has to contend with vague quasi-profundities pretending to mysterious depth, as in "Half-remembered shapes of/Former things" (from "Landslides") and "busy at night at some adult thing I do/like walking about my house/or sitting with mingled thoughts" (from "Busy At Night At Some Adult Thing"). I haven't read any later Coles, but, in the intervening quarter-century, where does nostalgia lead? Or at least in the following eight years? I have his 1993 GG-winning Forests Of The Medieval World on hand, and'll put in a few words on that volume down the pike.


Zachariah Wells said...

You really should read Little Bird, Brian.

Brian Palmu said...

Will do, if I can find it, after Forests. Thanks for pointing it out.