MY BEAUTY IS AN OCCUPIABLE SPACE: 37 Prosed Sonnets
by Anne Gorrick & John Bloomberg-Rissman
Published by Paloma Press
Release Date: February 19, 2018
Pages: 44, full-color
Price: $18 (before discount)
Available now through LULU.
Paloma Press is delighted to announce the release of MY BEAUTY IS AN OCCUPIABLE SPACE: 37 Prosed Sonnets by Anne Gorrick and John Bloomberg-Rissman.
Anne is a poet and visual artist. She is the author of six books of poetry including An Absence So Great and Spontaneous it is Evidence of Light (The Operating System, 2018) and The Olfactions: Poems on Perfume (BlazeVOX Books, 2017). She is President of the Board of Trustees at Century House Historical Society, home of the Widow Jane Mine, an all-volunteer organization (www.centuryhouse.org) and site of the annual Subterranean Poetry Festival. Anne lives in West Park, New York.
John calls himself a mashup ethnologist. He has spent the last dozen years or so working on a long project called Zeitgeist Spam. Parts published so far: No Sounds of My Own Making (Leafe Press, 2007), Flux, Clot & Froth (Meritage Press, 2010), the text (as remixed by Lynn Behrendt) in A Picture of Everyone I Love Passes Through Me (Lunar Chandelier Press, 2016), and In the House of the Hangman (Lauching/Ouch/Cube/Publications, 2017). You can find him online at Zeitgeist Spam (www.johnbr.com). John lives in San Diego, kitty-corner across the US from Anne.
Sonnet 1 – My beauty sounds like itself
My beauty is not a story. My beauty is not free speech. “Twenty-three, with black, straight, shoulder-length hair / and tight T-shirt and jeans, my beauty looked like it could be a Ramone, The bartender / thought so; before the show, he kept / serving it free drinks.” My beauty is a Last Chance Beauty Queen. She’s restless for an Ikea rodeo, wears sushi bar sandals, stale green light, Styrofoam skin care products, government faucets, formaldehyde iPhones, my beauty is reading this to find out how you can get free stuff, Evanescence edits my beauty. You lied about the number of atoms in other elements. Go photograph a deck of cards and separate them from your other nouns. I’m injecting my eight-year-old son with Botox. ‘Tis ma belle (mah bel), my beauty, an indexical. The night I met Einstein. Ah, Whitney, après la deluge! My beauty sounds like itself. Is my beauty base or superstructure?
“These ‘sonnets’ fizz and sparkle, full of ideas and insights from writers who clearly inspired each other. There is a baroque richness to this text which ranges from ideas about “beauty” to social injustice, gender politics and much else besides. An ongoing delight for the reader, this text is an improvisation, the poets riffing off each other to capture the mind-boggling fractures of twenty-first century communication and turn them into art.”
—Alan Baker, author of Hotel February
“I’ve been trying, for two weeks, to write a few blurb-lines about this book, but every time I dip into it I end up making some new poems instead. This is a very alive poem space to exist in, think through, make out of. This morning my beauty is a study of the microbiome with some thoughts about wild yeast production. I’m looking forward to what it knows tomorrow.”
—Jen Tynes, author of Hunter Monies