RELIEF is a book of eleven poems that revolve around familiar experiences of discontinuous time: illness, recovery, habit, sleep, talk, forgetfulness. Most of the texts are built from a number of moving parts that tend to lurch from one to another: transcribed speech, malformed poetry, and sub-allegorical sci-fi narratives. Relief treats health and sickness as inherently shared conditions, both interpersonal and impersonal. Private anxieties are inseparable from communal joys. Care is messed up, disjointed. Mundane conversations are occasions for rest and contentment, or not. Grotesque fantasies are also occasions for rest and contentment, or not. Sweet, intimate, and a little gross, RELIEF is an intricately detailed and formally uneven affirmation of daily life. It also touches on: body horror, vernacular knowledge of complex systems, juvenile humor, intergenerational psychic structures, banal forms of time travel, the ceaseless circulation of money, bad jobs, alternate dimensions, nostalgia, personal and social grooming, and the pleasures of self-pity.
Steven Zultanski is the author of several books of poetry, most recently On the Literary Means of Representing the Powerful as Powerless (Information as Material, 2017), HONESTLY (Book*hug, 2018) and BRIBERY (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2014). His essay on Alice Notley's uses of other voices is part of UDP's 20:20 Pamphlet Series. His critical writing has appeared in Art in America, Frieze, Kunstkritikk, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Mousse, and elsewhere. He lives in Copenhagen. Author City: BROOKLYN, NY USA