BlazeVOX books

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Compulsive Words by Michael Ruby

Price: $16.00

Compulsive Words Michael Ruby BlazeVOX [books]

On January 29, 1999, my older brother was near death in a Boston hospital after emergency surgery for a blood clot in the abdomen.  As I sat near the phone in Brooklyn that morning, trying to type up an old manuscript, it suddenly occurred to me that I was experiencing an extreme emotion, dread, and that I should see which words this extreme emotion displaced in my mind.  While writing the poem “Dread,” I perceived certain words repeatedly appearing, forcing themselves on me, taking over the poem.  From then on, during composition, I noticed the appearance of these “compulsive words,” which I first collected in the poem “Compulsive Words” in 2000, and whose number has continued to grow ever since.

—Michael Ruby

 

Reading the poems in Compulsive Words is like taking a hard drug.

—Aaron Kiely

 

Michael Ruby’s new book is experienced as a kind of sotto voce diction, an unrelenting mumbling in the back of the mind, which takes two very different forms: as a graphic representation of voices (words presented in diagrammatic patterns), and as what might be “transcriptions” of those diagrams and patterns: “O paper placement machines/Blue ladder to family problems” or “Somnabulist prows to leaven/Healthy escarole…”   Or perhaps the diagrams are transcriptions of the other texts: the tense dialectic between these two poles is one of the things that makes this book well worth contemplating.

—John M. Bennett

 

 

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Michael Handler Ruby is the author of four other books of poetry—At an Intersection (Alef Books, 2002), Window on the City (BlazeVOX [books], 2006), Fleeting Memories (Ugly Duckling Presse ebook, 2008) and The Edge of the Underworld (BlazeVOX, 2010)—and the editor of Washtenaw County Jail and Other Writings by David Herfort (Xlibris, 2005). A graduate of Harvard College and Brown University’s writing program, he lives in Brooklyn and works as an editor at The Wall Street Journal.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 104 pages
· Binding: Perfect-Bound
· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books]
· ISBN: 9781935402824

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