”For Revell, love is a large kingdom, and White Campion dazzles and aches as it commemorates the trembling balance from which the original heart of these poems beats, memory. And though we can’t regain the innocence of the past, memory is a way to re-enter the Paradise of our youth. Within it, advent and farewell are ceremoniously present. We are tied together thus. These poems are ecstatic in their relentless reverence of this dear world and ever-chastened by a lingering melancholy for what gets “wiped away.” Praised be the poetry of Donald Revell!”
Donald Revell is the author of fifteen collections of poetry, most recently of The English Boat (2018) and Drought-Adapted Vine (2015), both from Alice James Books. Revell has also published six volumes of translations from the French, including Apollinaire’s Alcools, Rimbaud’s A Season in Hell, Laforgue’s Last Verses, and Verlaine's Songs without Words. His critical writings have been collected as: Essay: A Critical Memoir; The Art of Attention; and Invisible Green: Selected Prose. Winner of the PEN USA Translation Award and two-time winner of the PEN USA Award for Poetry, he has also won the Academy of American Poets’ Lenore Marshall Prize and is a former Fellow of the Ingram Merrill and Guggenheim Foundations. Additionally, he has twice been awarded Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts. Having previously taught at the Universities of Alabama, Denver, Iowa, Missouri, Tennessee, and Utah, Donald Revell is currently a Professor of English at UNLV and faculty affiliate of the Black Mountain Institute.
“Donald Revell speaks with angels and martyrs and us. Yet poems of this world are the revelations of White Campion. With exuberant efficiency they swerve amidst the dangers and despairs of the contemporary moment, its outages and outrages, to show what it is to love people and places and dogs and the exotica of thought. Fully aware of the reasons to feel abandoned, yet it is a book about the constant possibility, even the threat, of love. The off-handed spirituality of this poet—and the astringent beauty of his language—is among our remaining excuses for hope.”
—Bin Ramke, author of Light Wind Light Light
“In White Campion, Donald Revell reveals how ‘At great heights, oblivion / Mimics creation.’ We are at the end of things, in which, like at the creation itself, everything incandesces in an agony of self-love. The deep cores of this collection, ‘American Sunlight’ and the title poem, are lyrics of such apocalyptic allegory and grace, we sense in their lines the soul in paraphrase. I can name no vision more bracing, no deification more companionable than that happening in Revell’s poetry.”
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