Softcover, 44 pages.
$6.00 US / $10.50 CAN
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The Smallest Talk from one of
Bull's Head Bookshop
Quail Ridge Books
The Regulator Bookstore
McFee, in his new book The
Smallest Talk, squeezes
the conventions of poetry-- image, rhythm, language and meaning-- into
the smallest possible package. These monostiches, as one-line
poems are often called, are extraordinary feats of wit, as much kin to
prose poems as to a comedian's smartest lines. If comedians
zing, then McFee zings darkly, with the verbal charge and resonance of
longer poems. The
Smallest Talk is an
examination of poetic line in its barest terms, a celebration of
compactness. Yet, there is a hint of narrative across these
one-line poems, the implication that even as a line stands alone, it
consistently speaks to its surroundings.
punch line and part epigram, Michael McFee's
one-liners are knife jabs of insight and wit. Delightful and
deep-felt, they are, in every sense of the word, quick--alert, agile,
sharp and, most importantly, alive." -- Michael Chitwood
"Novel as it
may seem, the one-line poem has long
been part of our literature: Whitman planted two in Leaves
Grass. Of the form’s
recent practitioners, the best
include A. R. Ammons, Jonathan Williams, Fred Chappell, William
Matthews, and now Michael McFee. McFee’s little poems prove
outrageously funny, arrestingly sad, wise, even sublime. Small talk is
forgettable; The Smallest Talk
but." --Robert West