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Poetry. IMPERIAL NOSTALGIAS is the second collection by poet and translator Joshua Edwards. Written in Mexico, China, Germany, Nicaragua, and during a train trip around the U.S. and Canada, the book reckons with itinerancy, innocence, and American privilege, while pointing toward a strange horizon.
"'Through a turnstile, past a diorama / of ruins, into the ruins themselves,' Joshua Edwards escorts us into the desert of the real in his haunting and prismatic second collection, IMPERIAL NOSTALGIAS. Deepening the archaeological excavation—or is it a salvage operation?—of his first book, CAMPECHE, Edwards brushes the dust from the remains of history, desire, and nostalgia itself, to reveal 'ruins as diorama, ruins as sculpture, / birds as music boxes. Everything / moves toward metaphor and dream.' A breathtaking cascade of parables, images, lyrics, and aphorisms, IMPERIAL NOSTALGIAS is necessary work, and required reading for anyone who has felt the cold undertow beneath all beauty. 'Life,' writes this poet, 'is terrible enough without swans.'"—Srikanth Reddy
Symbolic gestures feel
bound not by referential expression,
but by mystery and drama. If all
languages are essentially alike,
then softness or firmness is a matter
of tissues in which blood takes a clausal
complement. Taste for etymology,
however, comes from the poetry of
crucial decision making, fruit in one
hand and broad-bladed knife in the other.
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Joshua Edwards directs and co-edits Canarium Books. He's the author of Imperial Nostalgias (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2013) and Campeche (Noemi Press, 2011; with photographs by his father, Van Edwards), and the translator of Mexican poet María Baranda's Ficticia (Shearsman Books, 2010). He's currently a fellow at the Akademie Schloss Solitude, and lives in Stuttgart, Germany with his wife, the poet Lynn Xu.Review:
"Edwards's latest−from its cover art to the poems, photographs, and fables inside−is one of the most commanding explorations of travel to arrive in American poetry in a long time, and one whose closest forebear, in light of its lyric chiseling and its philosophical depth, is Elizabeth Bishop's Questions of Travel." −Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Rolling past cities, strolling through museums, wandering unfamiliar streets, Edwards's speaker is both lost and found in what he sees, and his lines make it easy to surrender your own bearings and follow him."−Michael Andor Brodeur, The Boston Globe
"Imperial Nostalgias identifies and discusses concrete, in-the-news-today type issues that so many other contemporary American poets seem unwilling to." −Jeff Alessandrelli, Prairie Schooner
"Equal parts travelogue and philosophical primer, Imperial Nostalgias celebrates the curiosity and triumph of the human spirit above all else."−Carleen Tibbetts, The Rumpus
"This is a book of frenzy and oblivion. Take it with you when you go."−Rachel Abramowitz, Colorado Review
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Book Description Ugly Duckling Presse, 2013. Paperback. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P111933254866