Salt Pier (Paperback)Dore Kiesselbach (author)
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Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
Number of pages: 80
Weight: 136 g
Dimensions: 216 x 146 x 8 mm
[Kiesselbach's] an opera singer who holds a note without becoming breathless. Kiesselbach has a stunning way to make the poetic phrase change meaning, and make better each line before and after. A trope that depends on synchronicity is not achieved/arranged by accident. His poetry is filled with green growing things, animals, nature's observances--and because of line lengths--a constant tension."
--Washington Independent Review of Books
"Poems often use a single image--meticulously described and most often from nature--as entry point to more profound territory. . . . [Kiesselbach's] language is compressed; sentences compacted by a geologic pressure to remove unnecessary words, leaving only the most apt."
"If 'Salt Pier' is, in part, a study of the irredeemable, it is also an acknowledgement of the earthly redemptions almost slipping out of reach. That touch is possible is the affirmation--a tenderness too resilient to recant."
"Dore Kiesselbach's poems reveal the particularity and/or strangeness of the commonplace--but many good poems do that. What strikes me about his, though, are the ways that visual imagery, diction, and cadence are modulated to fit his subjects. Thus in 'Rake' the inanimate object speaks (as in an Anglo-Saxon kenning) to describe the way it touches 'death / that life may be revealed / in green stupidity . . . fluent / as underwater hair.' In 'Hickey, ' a diver swimming among stingrays asks, 'How long does it take us / in water sunlight permeates / to forget needing ever to be told?'; the unusual diction suggests both the speaker's suspension in water as well as his apprehension of joy. The reader may hear faint echoes of Hopkins or the early Dylan Thomas, but the language is Kiesselbach's own."
"As the diver beholds 'a moon dissolved in salt, ' so we behold the world transformed in these elegant, rigorous, unsparing poems by Dore Kiesselbach. With the problem-solving logic of syntax, a turkey falls dead from a tree, the duelist's bullet turns a pocket watch to shrapnel, a stepfather works his world of harm. Morally acute and musically distillate, this is a book to celebrate."
"I have followed, with pleasure, Dore Kiesselbach's sinuous poems for several years. Some of them remind me of pythons wrapped around a tree limb above a riverbank. Those make me nervous. Others remind me of a favorite shirt, a shirt one will never relinquish, never. His poems, each one a tiny defibrillator, are a wonder."
"[F]ascinating....Kiesselbach is...capable of bringing dark comedy into his investigations of the everyday....His knowingly clich d treatment of otherwise neglected subjects, on the other hand, reinforces suspicions about the effect of presentation and the importance of engaging critically with the familiar."