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Where's the Moon, There's the Moon

Poems

Dan Chiasson

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Description

These are powerfully original poems about the sweetness and pain of adulthood and fatherhood by the critically acclaimed poet Dan Chiasson.

A child’s improvised game of “Where’s the moon, There’s the moon” is the shaping metaphor for this collection, but adult matters of seeking and finding, loss and recovery, anticipation and desire’s uncertain rewards are at its heart. Chiasson makes poignant use of objects and nature’s givens as correlatives for our human struggles: “Being near me never made anyone a needle,” he writes in “Thread,” and in the poem titled “Tree,” “All day I waited to be blown; / then someone cut me down.” In the title sequence, a multipart poem about fathers and sons, Chiasson describes the ways the gift for being absent, a poet’s gift, is passed from father to son, as he watches his own children sink into the enigmatic silences that mimic his own—silences that he, in turn, connects with his own father’s disappearance from his life.

Chiasson is a poet of great grief and love. In this third book, his voice is more commanding than ever, embracing the notion of how small—yet how rich and significant—are our individual stories in time and space.

From the Hardcover edition.

Publishers Weekly Review

Mar 22, 2010 – In his third book, Chiasson continues his exploration of the places where older high culture meets contemporary culture, both high and popular. In this case, his poems quote from or mirror works by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Emily Dickinson, and Henry David Thoreau, among others; the long title poem is centered around the classic children's story “Sylvester and the Magic Pebble.” The book explores fatherhood—both in terms of Chiasson's own father and his children. In the title poem, a story read to his children illuminates “my father's distance and yet the tendency of distant things/ to become central.” Distance and death are ever-present, as in the book's first poem: “Here follows the phone number of a dead person,” writes Chiasson. A series of short, aphoristic pieces at the book's conclusion tries to stave off endings through “hide and seek: the magic trick/ of keeping time in play by yo-yo/ mini-episodes of loss and recovery.” In between are poems of formal variety and accessible speech that are equal parts mournful and hopeful: “If you surround yourself with sadness, you seem happy,” reads a line from “Monitor”; “Roman Song” offers another note: “Let everything you eat be your good food.”
Where's the Moon, There's the Moon
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  • $13.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Poetry
  • Published: Feb 02, 2010
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Seller: Random House, LLC
  • Print Length: 88 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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