Friday, September 24, 2010

What is Don Bogen reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Don Bogen, author of four books of poetry, most recently An Algebra.

His entry begins:
I find myself reading big books right now. In fiction, Anna Karenina, in the Louise and Aylmer Maude translation from 1918--part of my "classics I've never gotten around to reading" list, but not for long, I hope. Also, One Hundred Years of Solitude in the original Spanish. I read the brilliant Rabassa translation what seems like a hundred years ago (My Bard/Avon paperback cost $1.95) and loved it. My distant memories of that are helping to guide me now, at least a little--what a beautifully dense, interwoven world it presents.

I much prefer reading...[read on]
Among the praise for An Algebra:
An Algebra registers a series of unrelenting impingements upon a sensibility that may in more guarded moments find ways to deflect them. What comes through are only the essentials, pared down to the force with which they insist on being taken account of. The movement from poem to poem is headlong but strangely not rushed. The lines are short, the diction a model of clarity, and the rhythms impeccable. It’s one of the most compelling books I’ve read in years.”
—James McMichael

"Don Bogen is a wise and playful poet who manages the political and the personal with equal aplomb. He takes hold of poetry, the shape-shifting god, and in his hands it twists, morphs, relinquishes. Bogen reinvigorates the art by defining its limits, then pushing bravely past."
—D. A. Powell

"A private, clarifying testimony refracted by sensuous moments and clawed reflections of a speaker shedding everything that isn't wanted or needed—everything except the intoxicating pull of the past bound to the deep desire to be 'always becoming.' The subtle operation of these skillfully interset lyrics makes for a consummate reunion of broken parts, an algebra."
—C.D. Wright
Learn more about An Algebra at the University of Chicago Press website.

Don Bogen is the author of four books of poetry, most recently An Algebra (University of Chicago Press, 2009). He teaches at the University of Cincinnati and serves as Poetry Editor of The Cincinnati Review.

Writers Read: Don Bogen.

--Marshal Zeringue