Moss's brainy and tough-minded verse has already been honored by a number of awards, including a MacArthur fellowship, and...

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LAST CHANCE FOR THE TARZAN HOLLER: Poems

Moss's brainy and tough-minded verse has already been honored by a number of awards, including a MacArthur fellowship, and it's easy to see why--her dense and lush poems give themselves ""to the glory raging,"" to a frank and elemental heaping-on of imagery and language that balances the sacred and profane in encyclopedic word-hoards. Her archaeologies of information gather themselves around everything from mothering (and the ""blunt love"" of family) to its inverse in the title poem, a breast-beating cry about Susan Smith, the modern Medea, drowning her sons. Moss can exhaust with her gluts of abstraction, her prophetic inclinations (""For Hagar""); like Amy Clampitt, whom she honors, her poems resemble ""the event horizon of a black hole,"" and sometimes drag us in as well. But Moss's ambitions, and her disarming womanliness, raise family drama to biblical dimensions; she finds simple joys in a bath (""Accessible Heaven"") and that manly ""thing, fat with pride"" (in an ode to Bosch). Moss suffers her art too and ""the truth of human inadequacy,"" even as she embraces with Whitmanic magnanimity the world at large.

Pub Date: April 17, 1998

ISBN: 0892552433

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Persea

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1998