Photogenic Memory by Arlo Quint

The book is a year old but it's new to me, so here's my review:

Photogenic Memory - Arlo Quint - 2007

Remember freshman year and your boyfriend who liked to ride freestyle bikes? Remember his friends? They were pretty good guys, weren't they? Well, I'm glad you like them, because 10 years later one of them is going to write a dang fine book of poetry that you will discover through a completely different circle of contacts.

It's hard to be impartial when you know someone personally, I think. Of course I'll like the book -- Arlo's a nice guy. But that's not why I like the book. And I don't just like the book because we have lived in the same corners of Maine (Old Town/ Orono and then the very random/remote Pittsfield). The book is "for Kyle Souza" who I last saw in 2005 working in the electronics dept of the Newport/Palmyra Wal Mart. I don't know what's happened since. Anyway, knowing bits of the "in" isn't why I like the book, either.

I like it because it does what a poem is supposed to do, because it does what Pound talks about in the essay "How to Read" (reviewing that next! reading it right now!). It effectively "charges language with meaning." What I mean, how I mean this is that it moves fast. It's smart and then a little smart alecky. Like when it uses slang terms or slips into ballad, a sorta meta-ballad, then goes back to tweaking the meaning of words in deceptively simple but smart ways.

I think there's still a few copies left. Go here if you're interested.

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