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Pages from a Scrapbook of Immigrants: A Journey in Poems

Marcus, Morton

ISBN 10: 0918273471 / ISBN 13: 9780918273475
Published by Coffee House Press, 1988
Used Condition: Fine Condition Soft cover
From Dickson Street Bookshop (FAYETTEVILLE, AR, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Signed by author. No markings. Binding is tight, covers and spine fully intact. All edges are clean. Very clean, crisp, and tight copy. Not Ex-Library. All books offered from DSB are stocked at our store in Fayetteville, AR. Save on shipping by ordering multiple titles. 130pp. Softcover Fine Condition Size: 6" x 9" English Text. Bookseller Inventory # 018373

Bibliographic Details

Title: Pages from a Scrapbook of Immigrants: A ...

Publisher: Coffee House Press

Publication Date: 1988

Binding: Softcover

Book Condition:Fine Condition

Signed: Signed by author.

About this title


Fifty-six narrative poems tell the story of the author's family's migration from Czarist Russia to the United States.


All That Is Left
Aunt Bertha
The Barrier
The Crossing
Defender Of The Faith
Dinner At Grandpa's
Father And Son
The Gift
Grandchild's Songs
Grandfather Remembers His Youth: Leaving Home
Grandfather Remembers His Youth: The Onion
Grandfather Remembers His Youth: Winter
The Grandmother
Grandmother's Secret
A Great-great-uncle's Story
A Great-uncle Remembers His Phantom Horses
The Holy Ones
The Immigrant
In 1943, The Boy Imagines
It Begins Right Here
The Last Visit
The Marriage Agreement
Meeting Benny Leonard
The Memory
The Mirror
Mother Again
Mother Remembers Her Eighth Winter
The New Apartment House
The New Glasses
The Old Country
The Other Half
The Overcoat
The Photograph
The Poet At Eight
The Poet At Five
The Poet At Forty
The Poet At Ten
The Poet At Thirty
The Poet At Three
The Search
A Theory Of Genetics
Unckle Frankie
Uncle Abe
Uncle Dave
Uncle Ike
Vilna, Lithuanian Russia, 1892
The Wolf Without His Teeth
The Women In The Photograph
-- Table of Poems from Poem Finder®

Marcus, author of hundreds of published poems, is not an immigrant, though he has migrated from his native New York to the promissory land of California. But his eye, real and poetic, travels to a European past he never lived: It is the one he listened to when elders spoke, seen in tatters of photographs, and suggested by the remnants of old furniture from another, older world. Marcus's stories may remind readers of the poetic recreations of lost ways of life in the works of Edgar Lee Masters and Thornton Wilder, but the techniques and task really resemble those in the prose of I.B. Singer, Mordechai Richler, Yaacov Zipper, Chahn Potok, and, most recently, Andre Kaminski. The last poem-story completes Marcus' circle, tying Chagall-like reconstructions of Jewish fantasies and realities to the poet's own life; he remembers the origin of the quest in his grandmother's sensitive articulation of the meaning of her husband's staring into space---~'Looking West towards Vilna" is her analysis of the unspoken. Marcus's poems are steps in the imagining of the unrecorded lives that form his matrix, and he fills in the blanks in the picture of sacred spaces his family knew. In painting the world he never saw, Marcus creates landscape, plot, theme, and, ultimately, characters---even his own character. Perhaps these paintings-from-photographs tell us most of all how rich the imagination is; but there is about them a sense of the lived experience. Marcus retells the fantasies about the mysteriously "good" czar, who would be the Jews' friend, saving them from the need to escape to a newer world or into ancient postures. Amid those vain dreams of rescue, the downtrodden discover that food is king, after all, or, more accurately, a portable and ever-nurturing "mother." As the street scenes of the East vanish from memory and the struggles for a piece of the American pie become mundane after all, Marcus and a host of other Jewish poets and novelists "remember" lives they almost led, paths they almost walked, thoughts they would have hadthe untold moments and half-voiced emotions that roared inside the heads and hearts of those faces in our scrapbooks. With superb control over language and strategy, Marcus demonstrates the last magic remaining to take us to the newfound land shining in the eyes of the immigrants and, beyond that surface, to the lost lives, left behind by those from whom we come. Another brilliant book by Marcus. -- From Independent Publisher

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