“The Dream Police fights the context of poetry in a way I can only call urgent and beautiful. He is interested in evacuating all notions of poem to begin again.” Bruce Hainley, The Village Voice Literary Supplement
The Dream Police
Selected Poems, 1969-1993
978-0-8021-3457-8 • $11.00 • Paperback • June 1996
With each new novel, Dennis Cooper’s reputation as the most daring and distinctive writer in America today is cemented. To anyone familiar with his writingwhich the New York Times calls “taut, chillingly ironic,” the Washington Post Book World terms “brilliant,” and the Village Voice deems capable of “religious intensity”it will come as no surprise that before he achieved success as a novelist, Dennis Cooper was best known as a poet.
Cooper’s first collection, Idols, is considered a classic of gay literature, and his second, The Tenderness of the Wolves, was nominated for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. His poems have been sampled by rock bands and appear in several important anthologies, including Postmodern American Poetry: A Norton Anthology, Gay and Lesbian Poetry in Our Time, and American Poetry Since 1970: Up Late. He has also been featured in the PBS series The United States of Poetry.
The Dream Police collects the best poems from five of his previous books and also includes a selection of new works. From his darkly erotic early verse to the more refined, post-punk poems that led critics to dub him “the spokesperson for the Blank Generation,” to his later experimental pieces, Cooper’s evolving study of the distances and dangers in romantic relationships has made him a singular voice in American poetry.
The Dream Police is a vital addition to Dennis Cooper’s riveting and disarming vision of life, love, obsession, and the depths of human need.