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Emporia

$20.00
Description

In Marys Maxwells second collection,  a tripartite set of prose poems superimposes the vanished world of a small-town department store with a New Yorkers experience of post-9/11 collapse.  In a series of engaging tableaux, a young woman experiences early adulthood, marriage and motherhood through the lens of late twentieth-century shopping. The series of paired paragraphs are each joined by the pages blank space, a meaningful gap: Your gift with purchase, unexpected, the discovery of forms sublime arbitrariness.  In wordless intervals between ruminations your true subject was found: Whats no longer there.

As James Dickey wrote of the poets distinctive approaches:

How much I admire Mary Maxwells talent.  The most intelligent and scholarly of the poets I saw in my seven years of judging the [Yale Younger Poets] competition, Maxwell has a very good ear, a discriminating eye, and that most indispensable quality a poet must have, if she really is a poet: an original way of looking at things, a definite stance.

Formally ambitious yet full of modest charms, Emporiasdivine comedyconcludes with a spunky apology to the legacies of Whitman and OHara: The reader was to conceive of a souls lonely climb, period spent in purifying exile, then starlit daredevil escape.  Of course its all been done before, but now at last you know where this too was heading:  The impetus behind these words was love, author of all genuine movement.

Table of Contents

I

1. Entrance    11

2. The Submarine    12

3. Elevator Operator    13

4. Ladies Lounge    14

5. The Scout Counter    15

6. Windows    16

7. Gigi    17

8. The Wooden Stairs    18

9. Shoes     19

10. Gift Wrap    20

11. The Time Clock    21

12. Housewares    22

13. The Fashion Show    23

14. Cosmetics    24

15. Charm Bracelets    25

16. Hats And Gloves    26

17. Ladies Lingerie    27

18. Bargain Basement    28

19. Dressing Rooms    29

20. Parson-Souders    30

II

21. Downtown Pittsburgh    33

22. Departments    34

23. Best & Co.    35

24. Cathedrals Of Commerce    36

25. The Bird Cage    37

26. Rates Of Exchange    38

27. Wanamakers    39

28. Passages    40

29. Monoprix    41

30. Luggage    42

31. Au Printemps    43

32. Duty-Free    44

33. Samaritaine    45

34. Zurich    46

35. Mind the Gap    47

36. Amsterdam    48

37. Modernista    49

38. Auchan    50

39. Montreal    51

40. Transworld    52

III

41. The Beauty Salon    55

42. Ambitions    56

43. Credit Cards    57

44. Le Train Bleu    58

45. B. Altman’s    59

46. Rosh Hashanah    60

47. Subway Entrance    61

48. Dollar Bill’s    62

49. Town Car    63

50. Barney’s    64

51. Mademoiselle    65

52. Henri Bendel    66

53. Kmart    67

54. Macy’s    68

55. Strollers    69

56. ABC Carpet    70

57. Century 21    71

58. World Trade     72

59. Alterations     73

60.  Exit    74

 

Notes and Acknowledgements    76

About Emporia    77

About the Author    78

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