Pictures at an Exhibition: A Petersburg Album (Akron Series in Poetry)

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9781629220246: Pictures at an Exhibition: A Petersburg Album (Akron Series in Poetry)

Wrestling with the questions of travel, memory, and perception, Pictures at an Exhibition: A Petersburg Album is, at its core, an unrequited love song to St. Petersburg. The fever dream of Peter the Great, Pushkin, Dostoyevsky, Gogol, and Akhmatova, St. Petersburg is the occasion for a broader meditation on all we come to love and lose. Pictures began as a journal notebook in 2002, as the poet tried to capture this spectacle-rich and memory-laden city that he had visited ten years before. Scored to the movements of Modest Mussorgsky’s legendary suite―a work of art elegizing a lost friend, the artist Hartmann―Pictures marks, and sometimes sings, the incommensurability of word and world.

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From the Back Cover:

In Pictures at an Exhibition, Philip Metres has done for contemporary Russian literature more than any American of his generation that I can think of. To this remarkable work, he brings the full richness of his poetic gift. As a native St.Petersburger, I recognize the very essence, the hidden, ever-evanescent core of that unreal, strikingly literary and literal and palpably artificial city captured in these poems. His writes with love, he writes with verve, and with passionate skill. What he does is both beautiful and important. *Piter* owes him a debt of gratitude.--Mikhail Iossel, author of Every Hunter Wants to Know: A Leningrad Life
 
 
Pictures at an Exhibition: A Petersburg Album takes its name from Modest Musorgsky's moody music meant to simulate a stroll through a gallery, but the "pictures" Philip Metres describes are fraught with all the tensions that place, history, language, and self can mingle . . . . Inventive and various in its approach to what structures a poem, here are constant risks and delights in the "album" of observations deeply informed by the emotional history of what it means to know a country, a city, and a language both translated and untranslatable.--Maxine Chernoff, author of Here and The Selected Poems of Friedrich Hölderlin

About the Author:

Philip Metres is the author of a number of books, including Sand Opera (2015), I Burned at the Feast: Selected Poems of Arseny Tarkovsky (2015), A Concordance of Leaves (2013), To See the Earth (2008), and Behind the Lines: War Resistance Poetry on the American Homefront since 1941 (2007). His work has garnered two NEA fellowships, five Ohio Arts Council Grants, the George W. Hunt, S.J. Prize, the Beatrice Hawley Award, two Arab American Book Awards, the Watson Fellowship, the Creative Workforce Fellowship, the Cleveland Arts Prize and the PEN/Heim Translation Fund grant. He is professor of English at John Carroll University in Cleveland.

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