Poetry Sue Owen My Doomsday Sampler: Poems

ISBN 13: 9780807124024

My Doomsday Sampler: Poems

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9780807124024: My Doomsday Sampler: Poems

MY DOOMSDAY SAMPLER provides all the brooding and wit its startling title suggests. Not only has Sue Owen explored her apocalyptic vision of the potential changes and threats awaiting the world, whether they be environmental, nuclear, or political, but she also has produced a sampler that recalls the artist's craft, like the woman who takes up her needle to stitch her alphabet and reveals the sharpness of her talent.

Owen's sly cipher of twentieth-century dread includes her "Thorn on the Rose," "The Black Pepper," and solitary "Period"--"the dark moon that / no light in my voice / could ever make shine." She reminds us of our smallness and demise: "You are nothing and your / nothingness will not pass" ("Burnt to a Crisp"), but her imagined doomsday, which includes devils, hell, and angels, is also playful, and she searches hard for the ecstasy of this earth. In "Crickets," the insects' "notes rise to the stars, / and float up through the / thick night, as if their / joy itself were the only / light we needed to follow."

A beguiling simplicity overlays these fifty poems of dark charm and amusement. Almost every one a uniform seven quatrains, they often take as their departure point familiar figures of speech. But from the proverbial, Owen draws forth arresting motifs of fear and dying light as she examines "this shortness / of breath between birth / and the coming grave," achieving a wickedly wry tone in these final minutes of the millennium.

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From the Back Cover:

"The promise of home-spun life lessons turns to chilling doom-saying in the hands of this priestess-seamstress." --TIMES-PICAYUNE.

"Owen is an original in her approach to the ordinary, which turns out to be anything but ordinary." --THE LOUISIANA REVIEW.

"Sue Owen's MY DOOMSDAY SAMPLER favors an imaginative excursion through the tropes of American English itself, those familiar idioms by which we rationalize daily life." --NEW ORLEANS REVIEW.

"Owen is neither a novice poet nor are her poems cliched. These poems reveal a stern wit and intense playfulness that presses beyond superficial appearances." --HARVARD REVIEW.

"Poet Emily Dickinson wrote, 'Life is a spell so exquisite that everything conspires to break it.' Sue Owen fights the conspiracy." --WRITERS AT WORK.

About the Author:

SUE OWEN is poet-in-residence at Louisiana State University and the author of two previous books of poetry, NURSERY RHYMES FOR THE DEAD and THE BOOK OF WINTER, which won a national competition. Her poems have appeared in HARVARD MAGAZINE, THE IOWA REVIEW, THE NATION, PLOUGHSHARES, POETRY, THE SOUTHERN REVIEW, and elsewhere. In 1998 she received the Governor's Arts Award for Professional Artist of the Year from the Louisiana State Arts Council.

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