Miss Lawner, whose first book of poems, Wedding Night of a Nun, was published in 1964, devotes the first section of short poems to the progress of sexuality, a ""loverslane ascension."" The poems are difficult, with an overlay of image, a rapid conjunction of metaphor. In the title poem, a mechanistic image (""motor vapors locks"") takes point from a shocking use of picnic play (""children pull through woods like a coffin over the cliff saying they've eaten already"") and the two elements merge in a sardonic alliance of ""pumped breath"" and love's elixir. More accessible are the poems about Italy (a ""stone woman) and Israel (""now they are hung together to be hung""). Frustrating, brilliant, occasionally moving, these are remote and interior explorations.