Pity the Bathtub Its Forced Embrace of the Human Form

Pity the Bathtub Its Forced Embrace of the Human Form

14.95

Matthea Harvey


“. . .Mournfully comic and syntactically inventive, Harvey’s poems are both pleas for attentiveness. . .and elegies for the images we try, but fail, to capture.”
The New Yorker


January 2000
ISBN:
9781882295265

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Pity the Bathtub Its Forced Embrace of the Human Form is Matthea Harvey's first book. Her poems have appeared in such magazines as American Poetry Review, Grand Street, the New Yorker and Volt. She is the poetry editor of American Letters & Commentary and works at BOMB Magazine. She has taught creative writing at the Warren Wilson low-residency MFA program, and currently teaches at Pratt University. She lives in Brooklyn.

 
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Additional Praise:

“Many poems issue from a space of Wonderland-like decadence, where ‘tiny tin gutters would be gauche,/ pathetically mimetic:’ and ‘irritated he would play with his/ Chameleon putting her on a paisley pillow or tartan/ Scarf.’ There is a foreboding to such scenes, and a toughness to Harvey’s speakers. . . . The imagination and syntactic dexterity [these poems] display are remarkable.”
Publishers Weekly

“‘Dear dust-ghost,’ writes Matthea Harvey in this beautiful first collection, ‘the instructions don’t make sense unless I sing them.’ And indeed, it is her fine music which manifests Harvey’s seriousness right from one’s first encounter with her voice. Later, it is the pairing of profound spiritual confinement with crisp, almost at times unleashed, longing, which come to gird the music’s muscular activity. That the poems are mostly one form or another of prayer is abundantly clear; that they gaze bluntly into the vacant stare of an apparently exhausted life-force is also clear and makes for exciting tonalities of spiritual and emotional engagement. ‘I would have liked an answer,’ she mutters, finally, and ‘I know how to kneel, that’s all.’ The stubborn anger feels generous, urgent, and savingly committed to beauty.”
—Jorie Graham

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