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The Cosmopolitan Paperback – September 1, 2008

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4 Stars and Up Feature: Kitchens of the Great Midwest
"Foodies and those who love contemporary literature will devour this novel that is being compared to Elizabeth Strout's Olive Kitteridge. A standout." --Library Journal Learn more
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

These poems were written while I was thinking about my generation's relationship to quotation and collage, writes Stonecipher (The Reservoir) in an introductory note. A child of the '70s, she came after Joseph Cornell but before DJ Danger Mouse, so the relationship is neither groundbreaking nor comfortable but instead fraught with ambiguity. Her thinking manifests itself in quotations—she calls them inlays—from writers like Franz Kafka and Susan Sontag, placed in the midst of original sequences of brief narrative prose poems. Through these samplings readers can follow Stonecipher's interest in juxtaposition and parataxis as it resonates from one poem to the next, though this is not what makes this book—Stonecipher's third—engaging. In fact, many of the quotations feel superficial, more like decals than an encoding. But Stonecipher's seductive sentences succeed in drawing readers in. Not unlike John Yau, who selected this book for the National Poetry Series, or Lydia Davis, there's a dreamy clarity to Stonecipher's best writing. Pity we who must corset our mental splendor into the whalebone of grammar, she writes in Inlay 4 (Susan Sontag), which laces us up so tight we have to remove a rib to breathe. (Sept.)
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About the Author

Donna Stonecipher, the author of two previous poetry collections, The Reservoir and Souvenir de Constantinople, also translates poetry and prose from French and German. She grew up in Seattle and Tehran and has lived in New York, Paris, Prague, Iowa City, and Berlin. She is currently studying in Athens, Georgia, and lives part-time in Seattle and Berlin.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 88 pages
  • Publisher: Coffee House Press (September 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 156689221X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1566892216
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #893,647 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kent Shaw on July 22, 2011
Format: Paperback
Stonecipher is a poet I will always watch and anticipate new work from. In her first book, The Reservoir, she teaches me how a poem can accrue meaning, which might sound like a really typical thing for a poem to do, except Stonecipher has her own particular way of doing it. As evidence, read The Reservoir, then read The Cosmopolitan. The books use similar prose blocks, but The Cosmopolitan is investigating allegory, specifically travel. What is gained from travel? What does someone possess by traveling? And, extended further, what do we possess by experiencing life?

For me, Stonecipher's books remain relevant to my own life as a poet.
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