Performing Works of Incredible Daring and Transcendent Kindness on the Flesh Trapeze
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A substantial collection of incisive neo-Beat poetry.

Throwing in his hat decades ago with the rebellious likes of Charles Bukowski and Allen Ginsberg, San Francisco resident Davis now offers up a hefty volume of what he dubs his “journal entries, mind maps and poetry,” all expressing in various free-verse forms his discontent with modern society. Readers will be pleased with the author’s displeasure, as Davis’s insights and wit cut right to the chase on a number of pressing contemporary issues: Iraq, gay rights, George Bush and more. These are poems of the present, both in the intimate, visionary delivery of their messages, as well as in their collage-like incorporation of bits of relatively recent cultural touchstones. Davis frequently excerpts lines from show tunes or clips of well-known dialogue from mainstream films and gives them a gentle but ironic tug. For instance, in “Loners,” a short political piece addressing the myopia of “Reagan-bush-wotyla-putin-ratzinger” in their attempts at “socially forcing freedom” upon others, Davis chooses The Sixth Sense’s signature line to drive home the poem’s theme: “I can tell you my secret now / I see dead people / They only see what they want / to see.” Constantly reaching for balance, this religious poet is quick to point to the house-of-cards–like aspect of much of our existence, advising at one point, “You don’t ask a problem / how to solve it / satan-how do we end this / hell thing?”; and persuasively warning against circular reasoning at others, especially in the poem “god told me”–“my faith is a lie / and i believe in god / so i discarded my lie / so now / i believe in god / and have / no faith.”

Unwieldy title aside, a funny and provocative work.

Pub Date: April 7th, 2006
ISBN: 0-595-38483-8
Program: Kirkus Indie
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