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Narcissus In The Dark Paperback – July 17, 2012

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Barry Smolin is a native of Los Angeles, California. He is the author of "Wake Up In The Dreamhouse" (2011), a novella composed one sentence at a time on Twitter, "Always Be Madly In Love," selected poetry culled from the years 1988- 2010, and "Narcissus In The Dark" (2012), another novella. Since 1995 he has been the host and producer of the radio shows "The Music Never Stops" (1995-2012) and “Head Room” (2012-present) on KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles. He has released three albums of original music under the name Mr. Smolin: "At Apogee" (2004), "The Crumbling Empire Of White People" (2007), and "Bring Back The Real Don Steele" (2009). His music has been featured on the Showtime television series "Weeds." More information can be found on the author’s website: www.mrsmolin.com
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 126 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (July 17, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 147821760X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1478217602
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.3 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.7 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: #5,729,943 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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The God in Barry Smolin's NARCISSUS IN THE DARK (not to be confused with our "real" God--or, indeed, actually to be interpreted as our familiar Almighty) describes His attraction to a vixen aptly named Heaven: "I was drawn to the shape of her mind. Her curvaceous language. She conceived a curious world with her words." Smolin's God might well have been describing the reader's own emotional responses to Smolin's seductive language. For if the allegorical plot appears minimal--God is imprisoned for dropping his drawers in Culver City--Smolin's language is anything but.

"Prosetry"--a combination of prose and poetry--is the neologism coined to represent such nuanced, invigorating and multi-layered language. For what else can describe the lyrical descriptions that illuminate every page of Smolin's and God's ruminations on the universe, sex, religion, humor, love--in short, all the key elements of human existence? Take God's recollections of the sunlight on his closed eyelids, sunlight that "suffuses my dreams with unnameable colors, colors that float past before I can find their place in the spectrum, the colors of one's birth and just before it." Concrete Whitmanesque catalogues ironically document the illusory world we cannot actually see: "Empty space, implied crystal, ectoplasmic artifacts, vanished magic." God's cellmate, a spider named Flippy, spins apparent nonsense tunes full of repetition: "The spider doesn't learn/The spider doesn't learn/It knows what it's always known/The spider doesn't learn."

Yet such apparent silly singing mirrors (or mocks) the more intense litany that weaves its way throughout the text in the form of Smolin's numerous aphorisms: "Freaky surreality soaks the globe in molten sequences." "Incongruities can be profound.
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