One of my favorite writers sat down beside me with her husband; other book-jacket-familiar faces appeared, smiling at one another and filling up the room. Best decision of the year? Yep, that was me:
And in the greatest of sagas, both at the same time. Everything that ever happened to me is just hanging—crushed waiting to happen to you.
While the saga unfolds on a grand scale, transcending human space and time, it begins with the smallest moments, the smallest secrets, of an individual life. As in her previous collections, what is at stake in Trances of the Blast is nothing less than the survival of the self at the moment of poetic articulation.
These poems also realize, however, that to articulate is to place oneself in metaphysical danger, to be exposed to the same waves of transformative energy that alter the greater world. I ought to have been a dress passed down through three generations then ripped in strips and used to oil the harpsichord and then the hinges of the medicine cabinet before being tossed on a fire where six kids on their knees are roasting marshmallows.
I wish I were a graham cracker. Whether I exist or not—I wish I knew that. The speaker shores up these fragments of an imagined life against the possibilities of both nonexistence and existence, unsure of which is preferable.
Existence is a force of disintegration that ends not with a bang but with a graham cracker. The speaker in these poems, who is responsible for reporting upon the destruction and reunification of the world, is almost always exquisitely alienated from an undefined Other.
Is it Safe to Speak? It occurs to me we are walking piles of dust, you and I, and still it smells as sweet as summer winds off the coast of Zanzibar and the sails are up and off we dash into the brine of our contentment.
When it does, however, the sense of the fundamental inadequacy of art to unify, even in the face of temporary recovery, is often magnified: It is no coincidence, then, that Trances of the Blast opens with a potent warning from The Book of Revelation: Go, and take the little book which is open in the hand.
Take it, and eat it up; and it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey, but it shall make thy belly bitter. My face is a jar of honey you can look through, is muted, so terribly muted, who could ever speak of it, sealed and held up for all?
And yet, in the last poem in the book, Ruefle takes up the spirit of this second permutation, offering the only possible human response to the certainty of failure:Read Mary Ruefle’s new collection, Trances of the Blast, which was like a hearty salad with fruit How they act like poetry is some course you can skip.
As though it were not an entire fucking meal/5. Ruefle is the recipient of numerous honors, including an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and a Whiting Award.
Summary: Mary Ruefle Blends Poetry, Prose, and Colors in the Exquisite My Private Property Things to Read Find Nearby Dispensaries and Compare Prices. The poems in Trances of the Blast, Ruefle’s eleventh collection, hover at the edge of the secret, on the cusp of either annihilation or fusion, steeped in both the hope and fear of realizing “both at the same time.” Fittingly, the new book opens with a poem entitled “Saga,” which collapses the individual and the archetypes within.
The universe of Ruefle’s poems is governed by laws this ruthless, a fact that she can’t help but chronicle. These poems exhibit an intense awareness of the conspiracy . Mary Ruefle's careful, measured sentences sound as if they were written by a thousand-year-old person who is still genuinely curious about the world.
All of it. Trees. Crumbs. Doors. The all.