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Consulting with the Swifts

The best poems here, and they are many, all reclaim a moment from the clamor of the world; and each such poem in turn presents the attentive reader with a like moment of refuge... Like Monet with his haystacks or cathedrals, Slonimsky achieves repetition and variation without monotony. ...The poems invite us to focus, to triangulate, to seek out correspondences. Writing these poems helped Slonimsky to do these things; reading them helps us. Rachel Hadas, author of Questions in the Vestibule, from the Preface A consummate poet. These remarkable poems, many the observations and musings of Slonimsky's alter ego, Pythagoras, constitute a memorable contribution to contemporary poetry. The three decades of poems in this volume approach "the calculus/by which light spawns geometry" and marvel at "How intricate, /hawk theorems for ellipses, scythe-eyed soar/a geometric text." Slonimsky is a keen observer of the natural world; his Pythagoras posits multiple lives: " I've had five lives all told, none what they seem-/as gnat, bat, toad, Pythagoras..." This book is essential reading for anyone with an interest in the intersection of science and poetry. Miriam Kotzin, editor of Per Contra and author of The Body's Bride His work strikes me as unique in current American poetry. X. J. Kennedy, author of In a Prominent Bar in Secaucus (on Pythagoras in Love)
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