- Paperback: 120 pages
- Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (November 11, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 188712893X
- ISBN-13: 978-1887128933
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.3 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 6.2 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1 customer review)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,104,246 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Before, During, and After: Poems Paperback – September 16, 2003
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""These poems map the tangled terrain . . . of the American family--its complex relationships, its twisted fears, its desperate dreams. They're short and concise, but they can be said, disturbing, and funny all at once: the emotional debris of an entire dysfunctional life packed into each one."
About the Author
Hal Sirowitz is the author of two books of poems, Mother Said and My Therapist Said. He has been awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship is a 2003-2004 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow. In 2001, Sirowitz was named Poet Laureate of Queens, New York. His poems have been widely anthologized in collections such as Garrison Keillors Good Poems and in Poetry in Motion from Coast to Coast. He has performed on MTVs Spoken Word Unplugged, PBSs Poetry Heaven, and NPRs All Things Considered. Garrison Keillor has read Sirowitzs work on NPRs Writers Almanac. Sirowitz works as a special education teacher for the New York City public schools.
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Top customer reviews
Divided in chapters of before, during, after, and later (sex, of course, being the theme), the poems chronicle Hal's misadventures in the realm of physical relationships, in a "she said" format. These poems are enjoyable and breezy, but few are as clever or original as his previous works. The payoff of these "she said" poems tend to be dated punchlines that feel more like tired man-woman relationship clichés than anything confessional or insightful: Hal the Everyman is horny, likes to have a lot of sex, doesn't like to cuddle or leave the apartment, and is a commitmentphobe; his exes like to cuddle, have conversations, travel and do things of a nonsexual nature, and be in a committed relationship. Although what makes Sirowitz's poems appealing is that most people can relate to them, this new set, I feel, turns the complexities of relationships into a one-dimensional gag.
Fortunately, Sirowitz is bringing it all back home in his next book, Father Said. Even if it's the same format, and his "father" seems like everyone's father, hopefully it'll be more inspired than the "she said" poems. In any case, you know they'll still be fun to read in the Sirowitz style.