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English Fragments A Brief History of the Soul Paperback – October 1, 2010

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Fence Books (October 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1934200387
  • ISBN-13: 978-1934200384
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,201,729 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Thought exists and has this book's solidity... [In Martin Corless-Smith's beautifully etched dictions, there is an older English we only now recognize, caught midway between England and America but rooted in both, and in bodies and consciousness, in the struggles of this century, where 'substance and accident' deliver us to presence, in 'modest love'." (Erin Moure)

About the Author

Martin Corless-Smith is the author of ENGLISH FRAGMENTS: A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE SOUL, SWALLOWS, NOTA, COMPLETE TRAVELS, and Of Piscator, as well as several chapbooks. He was Truman Capote Fellow at the Iowa Writers Workshop, and holds an MFA in Fine Arts and Printmaking from SMU and a Ph.D. in Creative Writing from the University at Utah. He is currently the director of the MFA Program in Creative Writing at Boise State University.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on January 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
Throughout time, pieces of history and life are scattered for us to put back together. "English Fragments: A Brief History of the Soul" is a collection of poetry from Martin Corless-Smith as he reflects on the meetings of opposites in our world and facing history in the bigger picture. Thoughtful and thought provoking verse, "English Fragments" is a fine read and solidly recommended. "My Picture Left": I now think language deaf/Its sentence blind unconscious read/So much want these hundred hairs/My face his eyes her ears unsaid.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
ENGLISH FRAGMENTS (A Brief History of the Soul) by Martin Corless-Smith is a single collection concerning the soul that contains poems by Corless-Smith and two alternate poet personas, the 17th Century religious poet Thomas Swan and Swan's foil, the more pragmatic William Williamson. Scattered throughout the book are quotes from various actual historical persons regarding the existence and nature of the soul. However, the collection is not a mishmash of contemplations. Each poem, each fragment, each expression, flows seamlessly into the others bringing new insight. Corless-Smith writes with a mastery of olde and new languages and is able to move the transfixed reader from the now to the then (and even into the speculative "what if") over and over again. My favorites include DARK MATTER which speaks of self reflection and the unknown other, and FROM: THE DIALOGUE OF THE SUNNE AND THE MOONE, and the haunting untitled poem on page 49 that whispers seductively from a long ago pagan part in the soul.
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