Item description for Puppet Wardrobe (Free Verse Editions) by Daniel Tiffany...
In search of the "dateless lively heat" that Shakespeare sourced to Cupid, Daniel Tiffany mounts a Jarmanesque masque of punk pageantry and finds "the infamous promiscuity of things" in broad display. Here is delight in "making up": these poems are trannies, the mind of each earning its costume through misdirection and imposture, enabling fictions that reconcile the cosmetic and the cosmic noise all in a fit. The poet may wear his "wide-awake hat," but the shoes are cruel and the impersonation always off-target. As watchword, you have the poet's "slang for the pink redoubt," the chummy vulgarity beneath prosody's underthings, so where the sense is lost, canonical Paradise was unfounded anyway: say hello to the New Flesh. "The water never shows its face," nor language on the whole, so the poet's inclinations are perverse, seeking those "magic perpendiculars" that guide one through countless guises toward the maraschino middle, itself a muddle of Oz at its engine. Puppet Wardrobe is a pop-up book, surprise is in its element. It gives an incendiary look at the New Parnassus and goes all purple in the spying. But let him blush. It's just a thank you to Vertigo, whose party's not yet finished. Dream away, Gepetto. WHAT OTHERS HAVE SAID "Supposing a doll of mysterious origin, a mechanical marvel, falls into your hands." So begins Daniel Tiffany's daring and brilliant Puppet Wardrobe. Each poem an echo chamber of song, cant, discourse letting loose an entire trove of voices, sayings, bending rhymes and jargonelle. What an ear lives here. Not since Eliot have we heard such a throwing of tavern talk. --Gillian Conoley Racy, playful, and ultimately rather ominous, these intricate poems gather up centuries in a single sweep and make it all shockingly pop. There is a brooding intelligence here, radiant with fireworks and emergency flares. A brilliant read. --Cole Swensen Decay, mire, ash and clouds are a given in Puppet Wardrobe - the words, the ideas, the poems we pilfer are filtered or partial or near full disintegration. But is the object, the language, the toy reproduced mechanically, or is it handmade, like Frankenstein, by the chemist? Profligate with form and meter, these poems are spirited by the unnamed slang-coiners from Englishes past, each but one species in the wardrobe that is the book's fierce, unified voice. This is a tremendously ambitious book and, stunningly, it meets these ambitions throughout. --Susan Wheeler Puppet Wardrobe is a pop-up book, surprise is in its element. Searching the "dateless lively heat" that Shakespeare sourced to Cupid, Daniel Tiffany finds "the infamous promiscuity of things" in broad display. As watchword, you have the poet's "slang for the pink redoubt," the chummy vulgarity beneath prosody's underthings. Say hello to the New Flesh. --Andrew Maxwell Puppet Wardrobe reveals, and revels in, a lavish, ravishing, erotic language somewhere between Middle English and Extreme English. Bawdy scenes glow fiercely in bonfire light, while neologism-sparks leap out, singeing and singing, with a distinctly 21st century sensibility. We arrive at a moment so magically post-Po-Mo, so new and strange it is almost familiar, like some long-hoped-for future world. All we can do is try and catch up and allow ourselves breathlessness at its visionary beauty. --Brenda Shaughnessy
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.8" Width: 5.8" Height: 0.4" Weight: 0.4 lbs.
Release Date Sep 27, 2006
Publisher Parlor Press
ISBN 1932559930 ISBN13 9781932559934
Availability 96 units. Availability accurate as of Mar 27, 2017 02:52.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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More About Daniel Tiffany
Daniel Tiffany received his training in the theater at the Juilliard School in New York City, where he studied with Marian Seldes and the great, modern clown, Bill Irwin. He later read modern and classical languages, with Norman O. Brown, at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He holds a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Chicago and has published translations of works by Sophocles, Georges Bataille, and the Italian poet Cesare Pavese. His critical works include Radio Corpse: Imagism and the Cryptaesthetic of Ezra Pound (Harvard University Press, 1995) and Toy Medium: Materialism and Modern Lyric (University of California Press, 2000), the latter named one of the "Best Books of 2000" by the Los Angeles Times Book Review. His poetry, which has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, has appeared in many journals, including Tin House, Boston Review, and the Paris Review. He has held residencies at the MacDowell Colony and the Karolyi Foundation in France and been the recipient of a Whiting Fellowship. His poetry collections are PRIVADO (Action Books, 2011), THE DANDELION CLOCK (Tinfish Press, 2010), and PUPPET WARDROBE (Parlor Press, 2006). Tiffany lives in Venice, California, and teaches at the University of Southern California.
Reviews - What do customers think about Puppet Wardrobe (Free Verse Editions)?
"Darkness Counts" Oct 9, 2007
It would be hard to summarize my views of Daniel Tiffany's book PUPPET WARDROBE without resorting to hyperbole. We all know there are dozens of undeservedly neglected poetry books arriving every year, but the mystery that surrounds this one is like that of the Mary Celeste, ominous and thick with Stygian gloom of the high seas. Tiffany should be a household name and not just for silver or breakfast! They should be carrying him on their shoulders when they win the Rose Bowl. You see, I'm at it already.
In the heart of the mystery rests the most basic mystery we all grapple with: why do we die? Death lingers everywhere in the pages of Tiffany's book; not only a theme, it reigns as a method, sneaking into through the bleachers, capsizing his sprightliest language. There's Colonel Mustard with a candlestick--children's version of death, obsessed with who, why and where, in a book cut down to half size so that kids can peep in. In "Come and See," with its naive, Levertovian title, death soon makes an appearance coupled with the echo of John Ashbery's earliest lyrics, "No bigger than cocktail lamps, some trees/ Dying of curiosity." (I take it that the lamps here stand in as "Tiffany lamps," cultural and spiritual reminders of an art nouveau past that continues to warm the present, maybe the future. Is there an end of the world, dying ember, global warming frisson in this poem, in PUPPET WARDROBE as a whole? "Out it came the world's adieu?" "Bye and bye/ the fields will be dressed with nothing." The longer I think on it, the more I discover in the book, not all of it fun. What's fun is the amazing array of combinations Tiffany brings to his craft, an unending series of rhetorical tricks and setpieces, inlaid throughout by stunning images of grandeur and loss.
There's a overlay of Orientalism to our man Tiffany just as there was to his great grandad, the lampmaker. The cover shows a smiling Japanese caricature in colorful native belt and tunic, saluting the inside pages. His purple fan droops gracefully across the back cover (it's a film still from Larry Jordan's "Visible Compendium.") Then there's the Charlie Chanisms of "Hint to gentleman of one Shirty:/ laundry at fire," and the Von Sternberg gleams and glimmers of "The Chinese are full of superstitions," "You smuggled me into Shanghai once/:/ now tell, oh tell, how you did murder me."
Murder me, there it is again, and I didn't even seek it out! In the drama of Lindsay Lohan's last escape from rehab few went to see her latest box office dud, I KNOW WHO KILLED ME, but I'd wager good money Dan Tiffany was first in line-he would be drawn by that title, for his obsession is the Rosicrucian mystery of death-in-life and life in death. "Then often leave the oaks half cut down," he warns in "Spy and Beauty Treatment, " "till the barkmen come to pill them." I'm leaving out the counterimpulse to all this Thanatos, that drive toward the erotic which animates even the tiniest of his "See-Through Dead Man" flourishes, and I'm not even getting to the book's piece de resistance, the puppet play "Shivaree," that brings in a handful of bizarre characters, Muppet-style, using them to illuminate the artery of human existence. PUPPET WARDROBE has it all, and more; it may simply be too bewildering for some, too over the top for others, but for me it combines the satisfactions of high art with the pure relief of a hand job.