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Cottonlandia: Poems (Juniper Prize for Poetry) Paperback – July 30, 2005


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Product Details

  • Series: Juniper Prize for Poetry
  • Paperback: 73 pages
  • Publisher: Univ of Massachusetts Pr (July 30, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 155849491X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558494916
  • Product Dimensions: 0.3 x 6 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,596,146 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Rebecca Black teaches literature and writing at Santa Clara University. She received a B.A. from Tulane University and an M.F.A. from Indiana University, and was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. Her poems have been published in Poetry, Poetry Daily, Virginia Quarterly Review, Conjunctions, Missouri Review, and other journals.

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Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Valerie Brooke Koeppel on October 18, 2005
Format: Paperback
Cottonlandia never betrays itself as a first book. Black is winking at us, sly smile, unafraid of her footing, "I've built a fort from the alphabet,/ its scattered letters." Here, Eli Whitney, William Bartram and Captain Walker are carried by Black with the same linguistic precision and self-awareness as her personal histories. The past, whether in the 1700s or 1989, is conjured, not scribed, "God of histories, make yourself known," and though mounds are cleared and floodlights 'totemic,' Black's draft of the past is mercurial, irreverent- "Paper fans given by competing/ funeral homes disappeared after/the church got conditioned air."

The first two sections of the book ('Photographia' and 'Invention of the Cotton Gin') transgress, trespass through history book and family lore, the third, 'My only Golem,' is where we find the true magic in Black's writing.

Here 'Miss Black' and 'Mephista,' her golem, trade verse that is sharp, mean-spirited at times, but a treasure to readers. "I do your dirty work, Missus. I'm that wench." Mephista slings at Miss Black. 'Mephista as the Desert Rose,' and 'Vegas and Environs,' are treasures in this collection, for sure, but also help prove that Black's work belongs with the best of those writing today.

Cottonlandia is truly a joy to read, reread.
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By MizB on January 26, 2006
Format: Paperback
These poems are simply transporting. Black paints portraits in words, so real you can reach out and hold them in your hand. She goes beyond the myth and stereotypes of the south and gives the reader a taste of the southern soul. I've read this volume a dozen times now and can't help but come back for more.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on September 7, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Poetry scares me sometimes. Despite that, I had heard some of these poems at a reading by the author and I was looking forward to this volume. And I wasn't disappointed. Quite simply, these peoms made my laugh, smile, frown, and even at time tear up. And only occasionally reach for my dictionary.
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