Poetry. Winner of the Editor's Choice Award. Exceptionally beautiful poems. The poems in ATHOUSAND CURVES find inspiration from nature, travel, mysticism, memory. Time is understood in glimpses—raindrops, tides changing, splashes of a waterfall. Sometimes the background leaps out of the foreground. Bugs grind leaves, a line from a rock song repeats and repeats. Here are ecstasies and nightmares, mysteries and clarities of daily life, fateful steps, chance encounters, donkeys braying, one nightingale calling, reflections off an office building's floor-to-ceiling window. These glimpses can become a poem overnight or take decades to finish. In time the poems come together as a book that moves among traces of these myriad conversations. The internal speaks with the external. Permanence speaks with change. Ultimately the book is about the twists and turns that life takes over a lifetime, the record of a journey with a thousand curves.
"The particular pleasure of reading Paul Nemser's poems emerges slowly, the reader paying close attention to the use of words, to the sophistication of form, until—suddenly—a cymbal crash that goes straight to the heart. We make our way, as Nemser writes in 'After the Calm,' 'in weaves/of raspberries that thorn across fences fallen to gaps.' Woven together are myths, impressions both internal and external, memories, and images. The greatest pleasure, though, at least for me, comes with the surprise of the line that shoots straight at and into us; and so, with clear eyes, we delight in, from 'Morning After,' 'My pale, my pearl, my onions in a pan.' Every one of Paul Nemser's poems has its own surprises and its own rewards. Certainly, they engage the intellect, but time after time they open the heart."—Margery Irvine
Paul Nemser grew up in Portland, Oregon, where he fell in love with poetry while reading in the storage room in back of his family's tool store. He received an BA from Harvard College where he studied with Robert Lowell and Elizabeth Bishop, and an MFA in Writing from Columbia University School of the Arts where he studied with Stanley Kunitz and many others. He also received a JD from Boston University School of Law. His love of reading and writing poetry continues throughout his life. Nemser's book Taurus won the 2011 New American Poetry Prize from New American Press. He is the author of A THOUSAND CURVES (Red Mountain Press, 2021) and his chapbook TALES OF THE TETRAGRAMMATON (2014) was published by Mayapple Press. His poems appear widely in magazines, including AGNI, Beloit Poetry Journal, London Review of Books, and The Missouri Review. He lives with his wife Rebecca in Cambridge, Massachusetts and Harborside, Maine. Author City: CAMBRIDGE, MA USA