Jazz Poetry Anthology
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|Format:||Hardback, 264 pages|
|Published In: ||United States, 01 June 1996|
As an augmentation of 1991's Jazz Anthology, the Second Set is as impetuous and bent as a Thelonious Monk song, and, in a fusty, academic sort of way, at least half as enjoyable. It should especially please the jazz culture connoisseur. Feinstein and Komunyakaa, in trying to make up for their first collection's omissions, have created an exquisite mix of poetry, history and personal takes on the literary implications of the musical form. The book tells a unique, intertwined history of jazz and poetry, embracing poets as diverse as Hart Crane, Ntozake Shange, Rita Dove, William Matthews and Lorenzo Thomas. In all, about 100 mostly contemporary poets are included. As a group, their poems exhibit certain be-bop qualities: throughout, we get jarring, overshot allusions to musicians, writers and songs, as well as a building, panoramic retrospective of jazz greats like Monk, Chet Baker, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane and Billie Holiday. The editors have most certainly achieved their goal of inspiring "engaging discussions on the nature of jazz poetry." (Oct.)
While individual poets have often been linked to jazz, this music's influence on 20th-century writing has rarely been seen in perspective. Unfortunately, this first large-scale international attempt to explore the relationship between the two forms disappoints. Some 132 poets are arranged alphabetically. Among them are Sterling A. Brown, Robert Creeley, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Langston Hughes, Carl Sandburg, and Leopold Senghor. The selection, however, is both too inclusive and too diverse. Dana Goia describes Bix Beiderbecke, but his stilted lines conflict with the music's rhythms; Heather McHugh's formal approach feels equally superficial. Individual poems seldom interact to form a larger statement; the ``music appendix,'' historically situating these selections, might have been a better organizational device. The statement of poetics, gathered from less than half the poets, are this volume's most valuable asset.-- Rochelle Ratner, formerly Poetry Editor, ``Soho Weekly News,'' New York
|Publisher: ||Indiana University Press|
|Dimensions: ||24.0 x 16.0 x 2.0 centimeters (0.58 kg)|