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Urban Tumbleweed: Notes from a Tanka Diary Paperback – November 5, 2013

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Editorial Reviews


Praise for Urban Tumbleweed:
"A gorgeous book. . . . The tankas are delightful because they evoke the jubilation of discovery that the practice of seeing and then finding language to give life to what one sees is like, the very core of what poetry can do. . . . Mullen brings her love of form and syntax to a rhetorical intersection with the transitory natural world in an exciting portrayal of postmodern ecology, an ambitious and subtle work." —NPR
“Mullen is a walker, and in many ways, this is a walker's diary, a record of her interactions with the city at the level of its streets. But even more, it is a portrait of her mind in the act of reflection, sharply observed and deeply felt.” —David Ulin, Los Angeles Times, “Top Books for Fall”
"Tanka after tanka, [Mullen] illustrates the landscape with brevity, humor and crisp detail. . . . Mullen is a magician. . . . The book is an instant classic." —KCET LA Letters
"The pleasure in reading this minor masterpiece from one of America's best poets comes from its invitation to contemplate, to actually see and feel all the small delights of the world of which we are so often unaware. This book makes us envy the opportunity for introspection that it delivers, and it has the power to reinvigorate our relationship with the world outside our windows." —Coldfront,
"Top 40 Poetry Books of 2013"
Praise for Harryette Mullen:
"Harryette Mullen's influences have ranged from language poetry to the rhythms and playfulness of the black vernacular. . . . Suffused with both politics and literary theory, Mullen's language refuses to be weighed down by either." —The New York Times Book Review
"Harryette Mullen is a magician of words, phrases, and songs. . . . No voice in contemporary poetry is quite as original, cosmopolitan, witty, and tragic." —Susan Stewart, citation for the Academy of American Poets Fellowship
“[Mullen’s poetry is] brilliant and enigmatic, familiar and subversive. Like jewels, her poems are multifaceted and shoot off lights. Mullen uses the techniques of sound association, innuendo, and signifying, and in this way makes the reader alert to the cunning of the English language.” —Jackson Poetry Prize judges’ citation

About the Author

Harryette Mullen is the author of seven books, including Recyclopedia and Sleeping with the Dictionary. She teaches in the English department and African American Studies program at the University of California, Los Angeles.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Graywolf Press; First Edition edition (November 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1555976565
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555976569
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.4 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 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: #314,790 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By theodore f. cornwell on April 1, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Harryette Mullen turns California walking into crisp, sunny little lyrics. It's a joy to explore nature with her. I like picking this book up from time to time and digesting just a few 'tanka' stanzas at a time.
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By Lynn Martin on July 9, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Harryette Mullen is a great poet.
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