Poetry. Literary Nonfiction. Following the 26-year poetic odyssey of her long poem Drafts, Rachel Blau DuPlessis invites readers, with DAYS AND WORKS, to embark with her on not just one but a plurality of voyages. In 2014, drawing on a 1914 translation of Hesiod's Works and Days appearing at the beginning of World War I, DuPlessis began to write, bent on dealing—as did Hesiod—with the insoluble oddity of being in the world and in our time. Both works are built of evocative awe and practical "life" advice, in which conflicting sensations of the textures of historical time, personal time, cosmological time all fold together, in all their contradictions and vectors of stimuli—desired and painful. DuPlessis's work, with rips of feeling, newspaper clippings, and senses of historical fate, represents the oddity of all these registers involving us in different emotional twists. How can so many opposite things and washes of multiple emotions occupy the same daily space? Are these movements through the highly saturated consciousness of modern life "a lexicon? A listing, a relocation?" DuPlessis answers in both form and language—with a sense of the generative and constant "between" in this work expanding the everyday into a mini-encyclopedic poem on an intimate scale. The text offers an evocative political poetics including feminist, eco-poetical and anti-war thinking. It is an intense and generous book.
Rachel Blau DuPlessis is the author of the multivolume long poem Drafts (written between 1986 and 2012), of the recent collage poems NUMBERS (2018) and Graphic Novella (2015), and of a second long poem in book-length episodes called Traces, with Days, a set that includes LATE WORK (Black Square Editions, 2020). In her critical career, she has written extensively on gender, poetry and poetics; on objectivist poets (as well as editing The Selected Letters of George Oppen); and on modern and contemporary Anglophone poetry. She lives in Philadelphia.Author City: NEW YORK, NY USA