Breath­ing in the Dark

  • Review
By – September 6, 2012

It is dan­ger­ous busi­ness to invoke the name of a great poet in a poem – it can either come across as pride, earned or oth­er­wise, or it can send the read­er off to scan the pages of that giant. I found this to be the case when read­ing Howard Schwartz’s Yehu­da Amichai in the Heav­en­ly Jerusalem.” As the title sug­gests, the poem is at once whim­si­cal and vision­ary, but it does not pull off this com­bi­na­tion near­ly so well as Amichai him­self did. While many of the poems in this col­lec­tion have the com­pres­sion and mar­vels of fables, I kept find­ing myself want­i­ng more – more risk in the lan­guage, more urgency in the lines. Dreams are a sub­ject of many of these poems, and while the uncon­scious can be a pow­er­ful accom­plice to the imag­i­na­tion, I often felt like I was read­ing a dream jour­nal rather than a col­lec­tion of poems. 

Jason Myers is a writer whose work has appeared in AGNI, BOOK­FO­RUM, and Tin House.

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