Also By This Author
“The language in Mary Jo Bang’s poems can seem to break free from its subjects, rising into its own realm; if Bang understands that aerial appeal, she also knows how to bring her poems back down to earth, how to link them to their subjects again.” Stephen Burt, New York Times Book Review
The Eye Like a Strange Balloon
978-0-8021-4157-6 • $13.00 • Paperback • Nov. 2004
The ever-adventurous author of Louise in Love looks to the visual arts for inspiration with this astonishing fourth collection.
The poems in The Eye Like a Strange Balloon find their seed in paintings, film, video, photographs, and collage, and the end results are something more than a sum of their parts. Beginning with a painting done in 2003, the poems move backward in time to 1 B.C., where an architectural fragment is painted on an architectural fragment, highlighting visual art’s strange relationship between the image and the thing itself.
The total effect is exhilaratinga wholly original, personal take on art history coupled with Bang’s sly and elegant commentary on poetry’s enduring subjects: Love, Death, Time, and Desire. The recipient of numerous prizes and awards, Bang stands at the front of American poetry with this new work, asking more of the English language, and enticing and challenging the reader.