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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.