ANOTHER WORLD: A Second Anthology of Poems from the St. Mark's Poetry Project by Anne -- Ed. Waldman

ANOTHER WORLD: A Second Anthology of Poems from the St. Mark's Poetry Project

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Blast II from The World, a mimeo-mag assemblage of established and new poets from the Lower East Side Poetry Project. Again Ginsberg, Ashbery, Lima, et al. lay it out with comparative ease, while the unsung sometimes make it in their tentative fashions. Compared to the first collection (The Worm Anthology, 1969) there seems to be less political engagement, more concentration on isolated perceptions and more cynicism -- about self and, oddly, the gathering nullity of time. There are a number of diary-poems, recording days of the week and segments of hours, some reaching for guitar string simultaneity, and others in which the past dissolves rather than accumulates: ""The drone of a passing plane/ Sounds old-fashioned and dull."" And to slip out of engagement with the world's crises is a way to boot the clock: ""Terror/ death/ murder/ illness/ poverty and rain/ Are what bothers me when I have the lime."" But most of it is ""dying in high style"" -- sex, eating, talking -- stacking up the reality chips. Some poems which attempt to reach an ingenuous nihilism are true cramp art: ""Hello, nose/ hello eyes,/ hello breakfast of eggs. . . ."" F' gawdsake. Others like a poem of a walk in Manhattan -- neatly managed images with the sinister coda ""three people are watching,"" - have the kick of cosmic movement in a poet's world wheezed down to minutiae. One of the best barometers around to what's happening -- and what isn't -- in emerging poetry today.

Pub Date: July 21st, 1971
Publisher: Bobbs-Merrill