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Wesleyan University Press

Fierce Elegy

Fierce Elegy

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Peter Gizzi's powerful new collection reminds us that the elegy is lament but also--as it has been for centuries--a work of love

Peter Gizzi has said that "the elegy is a mode that can transform a broken heart in a fierce world into a fierce heart in a broken world." For Gizzi, ferocity can be reimagined as vulnerability, bravery and discovery, a braiding of emotional and otherworldly depth, "a holding open." In Gizzi's voice joy and sorrow make a complex ecosystem. In their quest for a lyric reality, these poems remind us that elegy is lament but also--as it has been for centuries--a work of love. "This new poetry," Kamau Brathwaite has written about Gizzi, "taking such care of temperature--the time & details of the world--meaning the space(s) in which we live--defining love in this way. Writing along the edge. A way of writing about hope."

[sample poem]

Creely Song
all that is lovely
in words, even
if gone to pieces
all that is lovely
gone, all of it
for love and
autobiography
as if I were
writing this
hello, listen
the plan is
the body and
all of it for love
now in pieces
all that is lovely
echoes still
in life & death
still memory
gardens open
onto windows
lovely, the charm
that mirrors
all that was, all
that is, lovely
in a song



Author: Peter Gizzi
Publisher: Wesleyan University Press
Published: 08/08/2023
Pages: 72
Binding Type: Hardcover
Weight: 0.46lbs
Size: 7.84h x 5.65w x 0.46d
ISBN: 9780819500670

About the Author
PETER GIZZI lives and works in Western Massachusetts.

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