Subtractions/22 Skiddo (Michael Boughn)

With this book, I am officially just over half past (0.5 books over) the midway point of the 95 Books Challenge. Since we haven’t passed the midway point of the year, I feel on track and satisfied.

I expected to like this book much more than I did. It’s really two short books together as one (you flip the book upside down and over to read the other) and of the two, 22 Skiddo is better. It contains the book’s best lines, from “Breather: And, And, And”:

. . .
the window and fields

rolling by, corn and hawks
from other books sweep

through and are gone
as precipitate cloud

drifts of vowels to thin
and drip against the glass

Most of the book lacks this level of intelligence, play, and imagistic strength. Nevertheless, it’s an interesting examination of “junk” language — I guess I’m just growing bored of examinations of junk language, criticisms of our debased modern tongues, etc.

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