Approximately Nowhere

ISBN 13: 9780571327386

Approximately Nowhere

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9780571327386: Approximately Nowhere

Many of the poems in Hofmann's impressive new collection return to the subject of his father, the German novelist Gert Hofmann. In 1993 Gert Hofmann died, and the poems written since that time reflect the evolution of a complex relationship: frankness and factuality are tempered by grief, pity, pain, and bemusement.

But whatever the subject matter, whatever the real or imagined impetus or poetic impulse, the lyrics throughout Approximately Nowhere are expertly conveyed in a flowing style and a variety of tones.

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About the Author:

Michael Hofmann is a co-editor of After Ovid: New Metamorphoses. He lives in London.

From Publishers Weekly:

Hofmann's harsh, memorable second book of poetry in America (following K.S. in Lakeland) is his fourth in the U.K., where he's already widely celebrated for powerful poems concerning his troubled and arrogant father, the German novelist Gert Hofmann. The new collection begins with a series of poems about Gert's death: "I hardly dared touch you/ your empty open hands on the awful mendacious coverlet." From such scenes the poet proceeds to a sometimes-romantic, sometimes-appalled account of his German childhood (displaying, for example, "the furnace room/ where my jeans were baked hard against an early departure"), and then to a series of scenes from America and England, many recalling badly managed love affairs. As in his older work, Hofmann draws constantly on the rhetorical moves of the later Robert Lowell. But Hofmann's creative intensities, his talent with acerbic, deliberately unwieldy lines, and his narrative purposes allow his style to be more adaptive than derivative. Hofmann's tangled-up progressions from place to place, person to person, day to night, ballasted by hard-to-manage nouns, mix sophisticated disillusion with a deliberately adolescent sense of expectations: the seven-line "June," for example, gives a too-brief, furtive romance its due: " part of an afternoon, a truncated night... never a day and a day and a day... our honeymoon epic in illicit installments." Dominant moods of self-lacerating anger, disappointment and insistent, frustrated questioning are clear on first reading, electrically present in language and line breaks. But Hofmann's final arguments and attitudes can be hard to extract from poems so strewn with personal debris, family relics and broken public works; such difficulties, formal and emotional, take their own places among the rewards the poems offer. (Sept.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Michael Hofmann
Published by FABER FABER, United Kingdom (2015)
ISBN 10: 0571327389 ISBN 13: 9780571327386
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Book Description FABER FABER, United Kingdom, 2015. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Main.. Language: English . Brand New Book. A number of the poems in this collection by Michael Hofmann show him returning to the subject of his father, the German novelist Gert Hofmann, whose relationship with his son was also the principal subject of his celebrated 1986 collection, Acrimony, and of a memorable television documentary that appeared at that time. In 1993, however, Gert Hofmann died, and the poems written since then replace the combativeness and acerbity of the earlier book with a more complex tone: frankness and factuality are still important elements, but they are tempered now by grief, pity, pain and bemusement. Readers will note other differences, too: among them, a greater sense of formal freedom, a more flowing and abundant style of poetic discourse, an ever-sharper receptiveness to brilliant and brittle observations, and an increasing variety of tones, from the droll to the remorseful and the delirious. Above all, they will be delighted to learn that Michael Hofmann, whose outstanding talents were evident from his very first collection has found ways of putting them at the service of a more mature, profound and revelatory view of the world. Bookseller Inventory # AA99780571327386

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Book Description FABER FABER, United Kingdom, 2015. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Main.. Language: English . Brand New Book. A number of the poems in this collection by Michael Hofmann show him returning to the subject of his father, the German novelist Gert Hofmann, whose relationship with his son was also the principal subject of his celebrated 1986 collection, Acrimony, and of a memorable television documentary that appeared at that time. In 1993, however, Gert Hofmann died, and the poems written since then replace the combativeness and acerbity of the earlier book with a more complex tone: frankness and factuality are still important elements, but they are tempered now by grief, pity, pain and bemusement. Readers will note other differences, too: among them, a greater sense of formal freedom, a more flowing and abundant style of poetic discourse, an ever-sharper receptiveness to brilliant and brittle observations, and an increasing variety of tones, from the droll to the remorseful and the delirious. Above all, they will be delighted to learn that Michael Hofmann, whose outstanding talents were evident from his very first collection has found ways of putting them at the service of a more mature, profound and revelatory view of the world. Bookseller Inventory # AA99780571327386

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Book Description Faber & Faber. Book Condition: New. A number of the poems in this collection by author show him returning to the subject of his father, the German novelist Gert Hofmann, whose relationship with his son was also the principal subject of his celebrated 1986 collection. In this book, readers will note difference such as a greater sense of formal freedom. Num Pages: 96 pages. BIC Classification: DCF. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 198 x 129. . . 2016. Main. Paperback. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780571327386

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Book Description Faber & Faber, 2016. Book Condition: New. A number of the poems in this collection by author show him returning to the subject of his father, the German novelist Gert Hofmann, whose relationship with his son was also the principal subject of his celebrated 1986 collection. In this book, readers will note difference such as a greater sense of formal freedom. Num Pages: 96 pages. BIC Classification: DCF. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 198 x 129. . . 2016. Main. Paperback. . . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780571327386

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Book Description Faber and Faber, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 96 pages. 7.76x5.08x0.28 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # __0571327389

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