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Heise, Thomas Horror Vacui: Poems

ISBN 13: 9781932511321

Horror Vacui: Poems

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9781932511321: Horror Vacui: Poems
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These are ambitious, moving poems, deft, panged, and stunning.” Dean Young

Existential chilliness, mourning, and dread find a uniquely compelling voice in Thomas Heise's poetry. . . .” Alan Williamson

"Horror Vacui offers an often vertiginous account of how death imposes [an] irresistible fact on minds bent on both accommodating and resisting this one inevitable yet impossible truth. . . . And it's this property of being barely held together that makes Horror Vacui so striking. . . . an extraordinary mood piece." Ray McDaniel

In his haunting debut collection Horror Vacui, Thomas Heise explores the fear of empty space, a mysterious and abiding absence that is a pronounced presence in this poet's lyrical voice.

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About the Author:

Thomas Heise is the author of Horror Vacui: Poems (Sarabande, 2006), Urban Underworlds: A Geography of Twentieth-Century American Literature and Culture (Rutgers University Press, 2010), and Moth; or how I came to be with you again (Sarabande, 2013). He is an Associate Professor of English at McGill University and divides his time between Montreal and New York City.

From Publishers Weekly:

Haunted by the death of a father, a quietly panicked speaker stages a wily battle against silence in the 26 poems of Heise's debut. The title poem imagines a family spinning out of control in the absence of paternal rule: "You see, over there,/ your children have taken the house/ apart plank by plank and have/ thrown it in the water." A harrowing series of poems called "These New Days" describe a world forever changed and unfamiliar: "...if returned// would you discover someone else, strange in my tattered suit?" And several revisions of the poet's own obituary attempt to accept and take control of death: "Mr. William Thomas Heise, 29,/ entered into rest from massive heart/ failure on Friday, September 22nd,/ 2000. He was scuba diving alone/ at the moment of his death." Many of the poems are cast in narrow, justified columns, as if to head off even the minor chaos of jagged lines. (Apr.)
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