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Ring of Fire (Salt Modern Poets) Paperback – 23 Sep 2003


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Review

The remarkable poems in Lisa Jarnot's Ring of Fire seem to come to us out of some profound, yet distant, sadness. Rising on wave after wave of near endless iteration, like a linguistic Mandelbrot set, they arrive in the long moment after loss as the signature and enactment of an initiation - the primal collision and redemptive force of breathing between the tensile structure of the poem and the frangible space of living. -- Patrick Pritchett Jacket Magazine Jarnot's poems get me both in the head and in the gut. The "I" is key to the poetry's power: it's ecstatic. From the Greek for 'to put out of place,' the ecstatic self is driven out of itself. This is the simultaneous joy and terror of the work: From 'Brooklyn Anchorage': 'I became someone else ... everything/ reached down from the sky to kill me / and now the cattails sing.' The Ring of Fire is both Dante's suffering and the Johnny Cash song's self burned away by passion. -- Alison Cobb Small Press Traffic

About the Author

Lisa Jarnot was born in Buffalo, New York in 1967. She is the author of several chapbooks as well as a full-length collection of poems, Some Other Kind of Mission, (Burning Deck Press, 1996). She currently lives in New York City and is completing a biography of the American poet Robert Duncan which will be published by the University of California Press in 2004.

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Amazon.com: 3 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Ring of Fire and other allusions 14 Feb. 2003
By Gwyn McVay - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The titular allusion to Johnny Cash is not the only thread from popular culture deftly woven into this fascinating book. Jarnot often tests, indeed pushes, the poetry-prose boundary and embraces language that is not "traditional" in poetry. The "Sea Lyrics" section, in particular, is reminiscent of Leslie Scalapino's "that they were at the beach" in a reverent, non-derivative way. The animal poems, speaking of influences, are strongly reminiscent of Marianne Moore, if she had lived in the early 21st century, and "Moo Is Om Backwards" is also a sweet homage to Gertrude Stein. But what shines brightest for me in this book is the "Eightfold Path" section (okay, it pleases my Buddhist bias) and the ecstatic lyric "Song for Philip Lamantia." This is a book I always keep near at hand.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Can't Help Myself 29 July 2005
By Driver9 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This isn't a long review, but I love Lisa Jarnot, everything, and I cannot explain the "reasons" for these feelings, but I can feel her poems winding around inside me, especailly my legs. Isn't that enough? I could no more explain the taste of an orange, I just eat it. So eat some of these poems, or all of them. She is great, they are new, you will like them, and you may not know why.
Four Stars 13 Dec. 2014
By Ernest Lasen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very fun read - Highly recommend
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