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Today's poem is "The Reconstruction of the Fictive Space"
from Oracle Figures

Ausable Press

Eric Pankey is the author of five previous books, For the New Year, which won the Walt Whitman Award from the Academy of American Poets, Heartwood, Apocypha, The Late Romances, and Cenotaph, which won the Poetry Award from the Library of Virginia. His work has been supported by fellowships from the Ingram Merrill Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the John Simon Guggenheim memorial Foundation. A professor of English at George Mason University, he lives with his wife and daughter in Fairfax, Virginia.

About Oracle Figures:

"Bone-spare, rhythmically rigorous, and quietly intense, Eric Pankey's new book, Oracle Figures, is a dazzling feat, a spellbinding journey that keeps looping us back to the beginning of the world. As "the flint-flash of grit at the pearl's heart is a past words cannot return to history," the past haunts and dominates the present's divinatory search; and as with any significant journey, the first step is to lose the way. In the tradition of many quests, there are encounters with spirits of the dead; yet "the poem is what silence instigates," so that language itself becomes a form of divination: "the hazel rod of the word, the augur of the landscape ." Whether reading in sand the movements of a snake, or opening a book by chance to a significant phrase, one is made to adjust one's eyes to the glimmering darkness, as traditional narrative is stripped away, replaced by a sustained visionary lyricism, the four sections resembling a mandala. While slowly, inexorably, and astonishingly, Oracle Figures "tightens like a slip knot around nothing and undoes itself," the end is still to renew our vision of the world."
—Arthur Sze



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