- Hardcover: 66 pages
- Publisher: Eyewear Publishing; 1St Edition edition (April 24, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1908998075
- ISBN-13: 978-1908998071
- Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.5 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,030,464 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Our Obsidian Tongues 1St Edition Edition
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Our Obsidian Tongues has a tough, abrupt, incendiary quality. Its violent palette and its restless formal play ??ostcard? prose poem, epigram, ghazal ?are not gratuitous but a response to the turbulent and vivid Mexico it describes. Nature and culture on a collision course: skies filled with volcanic ash and streets ranged by ravenous mutts but also the poverty and desperation behind the drug wars. It? to the credit of this unusual first collection that these striking features still allow for quieter humour and tenderness. ?Jamie McKendrick
From the Inside Flap
David Shook? debut collection employs the city as a lens through which to explore the multiplicity of voices that inhabit it, cannibalizing a wide range of his predecessors ?from the Classical Nahuatl singers of the Aztec empire to the contemporary poets of Mexico City ?to scrape away the city? grunge and reveal hidden layers of sediment and story.
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All of this would engage my interest for a moment, I'd probably note the name and move on, and that is as far as it would go, if the poetry itself didn't deliver.
My Father had a vision
through the double-window of an airplane:
Aztec gods protecting their city, arms folded
like celestial bouncers.
Their listless kids swim, jump cannonballs
into sulphuric lakes, tickle volcanoes
until they laugh ash. At night they get high huffing
bus fumes, pheromones & sweat.
The sun rises each morning without human sacrifice
The misery of the city is enough.
Our Obsidian Tongues, is the voice of a city, the voice of a million pot shards screaming to be heard, it's the sound of all a city's fragments and minutiae distilled into words that then explode off the page. This is a violent, sexy restless poetry, that like the city itself cannibalizes it's past to build new structures, to raise new edifices to the old and the new gods.