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Curious Conduct (American Poets Continuum) [Paperback]

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Item description for Curious Conduct (American Poets Continuum) by Jeanne Marie Beaumont...

Curious are the workings of history and governments, the relations between the sexes, the behavior of animals, the life of objects, the labors of art, and the transformations of the imagination. In exploring these subjects, Jeanne Marie Beaumont's poems in Curious Conduct pursue and develop their own mode of investigation, a way into their subjects whether it be by interrogation, time travel, anthropomorphism or other conductive strategies.

Jeanne Marie Beaumont's first book, Placebo Effects (W.W. Norton), was selected by William Matthews as a winner in the 1997 National Poetry Series. For seven years she was publisher and co-editor of the literary magazine American Letters & Commentary. Currently, Beaumont teaches creative writing at Rutgers University.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   84
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.8" Width: 5.7" Height: 0.5"
Weight:   0.25 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jul 1, 2004
Publisher   BOA Editions Ltd.
ISBN  1929918518  
ISBN13  9781929918515  

Availability  1 units.
Availability accurate as of May 22, 2017 11:47.
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More About Jeanne Marie Beaumont

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Jeanne Marie Beaumont earned her Master of Fine Arts degree from Columbia University. Her first book, Placebo Effects, was selected by William Matthews as a winner in the 1997 National Poetry Series and was published by W.W. Norton. With Claudia Carlson, she co-edited the anthology The Poets' Grimm: Twentieth Century Poems from Grimm Fairy Tales (Story Line). For seven years she was publisher and co-editor of the literary magazine American Letters & Commentary. Beaumont teaches creative writing at Rutgers University.

Jeanne Marie Beaumont currently resides in New York City, in the state of New York.

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > English > American Literature
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Poetry > General
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Poetry > Single Authors > United States
4Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > United States > Poetry > 20th Century
5Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > United States > Poetry > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Curious Conduct (American Poets Continuum)?

Conduct Guide for the Imagintive Reader  Jul 15, 2005
Curious Conduct is a great second book. It's much more experimental than Jeanne Beaumont's first book, Placebo Effects, which I also really enjoyed. Hers is a playful, intelligent voice, completely and quietly confident. She's a poet who makes a decision and sees it through. That makes Curious Conduct a difficult book to put down. Beaumont's world is fresh and sharp, imaginative, and dare I say fun? From "Corrected Proof":

The Broom will now kiss the bride.

Let science sweep in and enrapture the every day

as the blue blue dress wraps the planet.

Don't take nob for an answer.

Most theorems beg in on napkins...

Not surprisingly from one of the editor's of Poet's Grimm, there's a fairy tale quality here too: this is a world where rocks talk and bowls are exceedingly hungry. There's mischief here, and a bit of a twinkle in the "Metaphor Drawer" where "The shovel is ready/ The key turns in for the night" and "The Knife is desperate for friends".

Beaumont is a poet who engages with the world around her as much as with the language she is using:

Can nothing be done about the air?

A man asks, pretending to unnoose his tie.

I edit the sentence down to seven words.

I think he could lose the sportcoat.

I love a poet who is thinking on the page, and yet still engaged in the familiar. But don't let familiar fool you: there's more going on here than meets the eye.
Wunderkammer  Nov 23, 2004
CURIOUS CONDUCT is Jeanne Marie Beaumont's long-awaited second book, following her 1996 NAtional Poetry Series - winning volume, PLACEBO EFFECTS. As her titles indicate, Beaumont tracks the ways human behavior, like poetic content, shivers free of formal and codified conscious understanding but cannot elude true poetry. The hallmarks of Beaumont's writing are clear rhetoric, measured phrasing, and a subtle sound that's round in the mouth. Descriptive lists of her nominal topics and various approaches through form and experiment get a little wacky: Jon Benet Ramsey meets early American mourning folk art; Bonnard and Ionesco, Snoopy and Italo Calvino are included under this "big tent."

There's a sexy poem about a girl with a parasol:

"raw hand to the tusk, sliding up the varnished pole
great skirt of the thing flying open -- hoop
braid trim quivering there"
"Her Parasol," p. 15

and a scary terrorist poem that started out being about the sorts of accessories available at a dream five and dime ("of the last 5&10 / in America"), but ends:

"'s given
nothing away Now take your pocketbook home
hold it respectfully trembling in your hand
like one singled out by a terrorist."
"Accessory," p. 66

The poem is important, because it very quietly shines light on a loopy, feminine, working class, but very commercial "American Way of Life," even as it calmly associates an ars poetica (what is a "pocketbook" really), commerce, and sex (the woman is the purse).

CURIOUS CONDUCT begins "It was a dark and stormy night..." and ends with Joseph Cornell's star boxes. Thus the luminous details and observations are carefully arranged in Beaumont's wunderkammer of a book.

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