In Position Paper, Carol Snow’s project of noting the world in relation comes fully assembled. This New and Selected Poems gathers work from Artist and Model, “a first book of singular poetic intelligence and attention” (Michael Palmer), to what Brian Teare called the “compassionately witty” karesansui—collages citing Bashö, Sappho, Picasso, Groucho—to new work in elegy to the poet’s sister consolidating a startling range of means. The art of Henri Matisse, touchstone of invention and “attention or gratitude, not madness,” is one motif attending this collection; the stone and sand arrangement of the Zen garden at Ryoan-ji another; not to mention the 70 prepositions the poet memorized in Junior High School. Snow’s work has been praised as “brilliant, funny, subtle” (Robert Hass), “delicate, masterful” (Cole Swenson), and “a new and mesmerizing way of looking at things” (Fanny Howe). Stones, art, family, elegy, error, perception, prepositions, permutations, “likening . . . like an only hope or home.” The whole, a kind of suite.
Carol Snow is the author of Artist and Model (selected by Robert Hass for the National Poetry Series and winner of the Poetry Center Book Award), For, The Seventy Prepositions (both published by the University of California Press), and Placed: Karesansui Poems (Counterpath). She has received the Joseph Henry Jackson Award in Literature, a Poetry Fund grant, a Pushcart Prize, and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship.
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