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Reviews 147 ami apart hate and spit out an american black poem ami apart hate art. (p.37) Yet, it is the more personal poems in the collection, "Leaving Janet," "Country Ethics and Donna," which most intrigue. Clinton's word sketches capture exactly the generation of the 60s grown a little older—living in the country, cherishing baked bread and old roach cUps, hoarding food stamps. These two poems are built around food and broken relationships —perhaps the cultural touchstones of modern America—and within the context of the collection, Clinton presents to us the self-consuming emptiness of such an existence: Then one time me & her was soppin' in the country rain, gettin' very loaded, tryin' to decipher The Grand Sadness That's Always With Us & she said "Ya know, ya gotta have faith & read the signs, like the time you brung me that casserole, I had wished for a sign I wasn't gonna go hungry, & Tom had just run off on me, & you brung me that casserole. I knew it was a sign." (p. 39) This is a culture where the "sign" has deteriorated: Black Panthers replaced by casseroles. It is this disintegration CUnton's coUection works to overcome as she discovers the voices who have preceded her in her struggle. DENISE BOERCKEL NOTES 'For a discussion of exteriorismo and Nicaragua's "workshop poets," see Kent Johnson's article, "Poetic Democracy in Nicaragua," minnesota review N.S. 25 (Fall 1985): 36-40. Places/Everyone by Jim Daniels. Madison, Wisconsin: University of Wisconsin Press, 1985. pp. 80 + x. $6.95 (paper); $12.50 (cloth). Shop Talk by The Vancouver Industrial Writers' Union and edited by Zoe Landale. Vancouver , B.C.: Pulp Press, 1985. pp. 128. $8.95 (paper). The Face of Jack Munro by Tom Wayman. Madeira Park, British Columbia: Harbour Publishing Co., 1986. pp. 128 $7.95 (paper). The term "work poetry" means diferent things, not all of them good, to different people . And although Tom Wayman has gone a long way to legitimize the existence of this sub-genre (by editing three anthologies), many still view it as less a poetry of purpose than a celebration of tasks. Perhaps symbolic excursions into the lives of certain tools are compelling on a first or second encounter, but the conceit wears thin with repeated use (as do overly deliberate descriptions of machine operations.) Fortunately, work poetry is generally about relationships: between people and machines, people and their jobs, people and other people (fellow worker, wife, child). As Andrew Wreggitt writes in his author's statement (Shop Talk): "I write poems because I believe they bring us together, make us more human. Work is just one more place we find each other." 148 the minnesota review In the case of Tom Wayman, the meeting of life and poetry often results in protest. For nearly fifteen years Wayman has applied his craft to social concerns, issues and outrages. This isn't to say that he is simply a protest writer, for much of the work in The Face of Jack Munro is celebratory and introspective. Wayman identifies strongly with the land for instance, and writes passionately about it. And byjuxtaposing poems of everyday experience (primarily in the workplace) with those antithetically evoking vivid nature images, Wayman celebrates the most fundamental relationships while commenting on the destructive forces surrounding them. As seen in "The Meadow," an unusually quiet poem for Wayman, we are never far from either the punishing realities of modern society or the threatened but comforting solace of nature: At the end of summer on the highway south just after sundown, the sky still bright but with a haze from the slash burning all along the North Thompson or perhaps from the air's coolness —like a window open into the autumn I passed a meadow where the thin smoke or mist hung over the grass in the chill Ught and some trees with the mountain close behind and I wanted to say to my dead: "There is stiU mist on the meadow you would think beautiful. Here is a place you are, for me. And after me, what can we care what those we don't know remember?" A meadow on the road...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2157-4189
Print ISSN
0026-5667
Pages
pp. 147-153
Launched on MUSE
2011-07-06
Open Access
No
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