Severance Songs by Joshua Corey

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Poetry. Winner of the Dorset Prize, selected by Ilya Kaminsky. In his third full-length book of poems, Joshua Corey puts the sonnet to the test with this sequence of fractured, ventilated, and unrhymed poems written in the aftermath of 9/11 while Corey was living at a pastoral remove from war and terror in upstate New York. The tension between idyllic personal circumstances and horrific world-historical events led Corey to produce this series of layered poems, variously sardonic and sincere in tone. "These songs shuttle between a past and a future, cast adrift or severed from a violent, ashen present into a necessary untimeliness.... What then of the sonnet, repository of desire and enemy of time? It is, as ever, that form by which we re-imagine subjectivity to confront altered circumstances, and to assess 'the shipwreck of the singular' in the maelstrom of the many..."—Michael Palmer.

About Joshua Corey

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Joshua Corey graduated from Vassar College in 1993 and earned an M.A. in English literature and an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Montana. He was awarded a Stegner Fellowship in creative writing from Stanford University in 1999, and received his Ph.D. in English from Cornell University in 2007. He is the author of SEVERANCE SONGS (Tupelo Press, 2011), Fourier Series (Spineless Books, 2005), SELAH (Barrow Street Press, 2003), and two chapbooks. He teaches at Lake Forest College in Illinois.
Published March 15, 2011 by Tupelo Press. 84 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Publishers Weekly

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Gorgeous, almost insistently allusive, and only infrequently overelaborate, the third collection from Corey (Selah) either is, or is like, a sonnet sequence: untitled poems of 14 lines—some rhymed, some splayed all over a free verse page—address love consummated, love lost, America in wartime...

May 16 2011 | Read Full Review of Severance Songs

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