Literary Nonfiction. Hybrid Genre. This is a book about displacement, flight, settlement and resettlement, about "life and death in the Pannonian plain," as Igor Webb writes, appropriating the old Roman name for today's Central Europe in order to identify the geographical place as also the metaphorical center, the crossroads, of twentieth century history and culture. Told from the vantage point of those, like the author, who were children in the Holocaust, the book is a beautifully crafted meditation on great writers—from Virginia Woolf to W.G. Sebald, from Philip Roth to Danilo Kiš—as well as a gripping tale alive with remarkable characters. None more remarkable than Christopher Smart (1722-1771), whose ecstatic verse mysteriously provides the book with its title.
Igor Webb was born in Slovakia and raised in the Inwood section of Manhattan. He has published four books. His poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared in, among others, The New Yorker, Partisan Review, The Hudson Review, The American Scholar, and Notre Dame Review. He is the Director of the Creative Writing MFA program at Adelphi University.Author City: SEA CLIFF, NY USA