Sleeping It Off in Rapid City: Poems, New and Selected
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The first broad retrospective of August Kleinzahler's career, Sleeping It Off in Rapid City gathers poems from his major works along with a rich portion of new poems that visit different voice registers, experiment with form and length, and confirm Kleinzahler as among the most inventive and brilliant poets of our time.
Travel--actual and imaginary--remains a passion and inspiration, and in these pages the poet also finds "This sanctified ground / Here, yes, here / The dead solid center of the universe / At the heart of the heart of America."
not she, who succumbed to a bronchial complaint. What would ever become of the great stuffed owl suspended above the divan, the Art Nouveau sideboard and chinoiserie? Blessedly, the illness was swift. And the Pavane … What was it Ravel himself said after a too too adagio performance years later? Something about that it was the princess, not the Pavane, that was supposed to be dead. THE OLD SCHOOLYARD IN AUGUST The welling of cicadas in the green afternoon before the storm catches
leave no wound or pain. II Then take their leave but are not truly gone, for amidst the cushions and disarray bracelets and earrings, a kerchief I’ll find. They, who are not careless in other ways, are careless neither in what they leave behind as well as where. For when I spy it there half-hidden in a fold or by an emptied glass they are already several hours passed from my mind as well as last embrace but return now in full if not in flesh. How well these ladies do contrive, how
From beyond the edge of Scythia From beyond the frozen ocean Pouring out of the Caucasus Surpassing every extreme of ferocity From the Don to the Dniester The Black Sea to the Pripet Marshes Laying waste the Ostrogoth villages Taking with them every last cookie Then dicking the help These wanton boys of nature Who shot forward like a bolt from on high Routing with great slaughter All that they could come to grips with In their wild career Their beautiful shifting formations
Thousands advancing at the wave of a scarf Then doubling back or making a turn With their diabolical sallies and feints Remorseless and in poor humor So they arrived at the gates of Christendom ALSO BY AUGUST KLEINZAHLER POETRY The Strange Hours Travelers Keep Live from the Hong Kong Nile Club: Poems 1975–1990 Green Sees Things in Waves Red Sauce, Whiskey and Snow Like Cities, Like Storms Earthquake Weather Storm over Hackensack A Calendar of Airs The Sausage Master of Minsk:
elevator “The hotel of the century” Elegant dining, dancing, solarium Around the block from the Black Hills School of Beauty And campaign headquarters of one Jack Billion (“Together we can move forward”) The exact center of the Oglala known universe Cante wamakoguake Or only 30 miles or so away, southwest, off Highway 87 I waken to the sound of the DM & E Rattling through this sleeping town Sounding its horn as it snakes its way through Hauling coal from nowhere, through nowhere, and