By Elizabeth Willis
Finalist for the 2016 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry
American poet Elizabeth Willis has written an electrifying physique of labor spanning greater than 20 years. With a wild and inquisitive lyricism, Willis—“one of the main extraordinary poets of her generation” (Susan Howe)—draws us into complex styles of suggestion and feeling. The intimate and civic handle of those poems is laced with subterranean affinities between painters, botanists, politicians, witches and agitators. Coursing via this paintings is the readability and resistance of an international that asks the poem to upward thrust to this, to talk its fury.
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Finalist for the 2016 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry
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Additional info for Alive: New and Selected Poems
Let y ϭ once again y, instead of x. Mother’s milk, the transitional apostrophe s: after all, put to your own uses. 47 “Kanzeon—(Japanese) Avalokitesvara; The One Who Perceives the Sounds of the World; incarnation of mercy and compassion” Nor annoyed, I suppose, by my husband’s— sporadically—noisy chewing. DOOR —shut:—the cries (which one can infer) have died out by here. ’ 49 HARBORED And I (or: And you), responsible, sole witness to the white latex glove—the sort used these days for commercial food prep, restroom maintenance, medical procedures which might result in the exchange of bodily ﬂuids; discarded—buoyed by the (with) cove down the rise, at a remove but zoomed-in-on (in cartoons, the exchange of frame: cartoon eyes zoom-lensing out at, in shock) in memory—Close up: glove—ﬂoating stately, plumply 50 supine (the Bay as right-handed), also cartoonishly animate, quite Mickeyish, waving—locally—as though bidding adieu to .
52 HORIZON: OLYMPIC RANGE, WASHINGTON STATE, AUTUMN 1996 Life mask of George Washington (Morgan Library Exhibition catalog) photographed in its case, in proﬁle, supine (though bodiless); the collection touring the States, our touring the displays. Proﬁle. I noticed I was not content without picking out some feature of the landscape. ” It . . they rose, some promptly, some managing with a conﬁding—self-rallying? — ‘ urgh’; some, on account of the prayerbook, even turning to set a handkerchief or glasses case down on their (empty) seats, “.
31 Standing by my bed In gold sandals Dawn that very moment awoke me ——SAPPHO I. — “ PURELY VISUAL”/LEUR RÔLE EST DONC PUREMENT SPECTACUL AIRE. MATISSE, JAZZ OR SHE FELL VERY SLOWLY TAKE: DRIVING through a pattern of girders and shadows 33 II. ” 34 GALLERY MATISSE, THE PIANO LESSON —“architectonic”: I read that—the shadowed stage left of his son’s face, a précis inverting the shaft of green (sunlight through a window) repeating the pyramid metronome. He’s not as young as he looks, the lad. Tick, tock.