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What Happens Paperback – September, 1988

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 67 pages
  • Publisher: Galileo Pr Ltd; 1st edition (September 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0913123196
  • ISBN-13: 978-0913123195
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,427,355 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
The distance
From me to you a slow motion stretch
Of ocean air, nearly palpable, heavy
Heavier by the second. it's late fall,
And it's too late to start over.
--Found and Lost

But enough of strange pets. It's not enough,
Remembering events as though they held such significance--
Such nearly physical import -- that they could matter.
What's the use. What's the right way to say goodbye ?
Maybe it means throwing out words like these:
Old blue sweatshirt. One bottle rubbing alcohol.
A quart jar reading WATER.
--What Happens

The style of these poems probably has only a very narrow audience, but, if you're in that audience, it's fantastic. Make no mistake, most of these poems are ... mournful. And Long's style is to punctuate his unbroken narrative of loss with abrupt shifts in reference or topic, all tied together by sharing the particular feeling of mourning that is the subject of the given poem.

The quote above, from "Found and Lost" captures the feeling fairly well; most of the time, reading these, a line from Rilke runs through my head, "Everything is far / and long gone by" or "Who has twisted us around like this, so that no matter what we do, we are in the posture of someone going away?"
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