Monday, October 25, 2010

New review of TFE

I just read this really terrific review of The French Exit by Timothy Bradford in H_NGM_N. Awesome not only because he liked it, but because he really got what I was trying to do, feels like, in terms of language and tone and mechanics and everything. I also love that he talks about "Blogpoem@Sea" but refuses to give away the ending. Here's a couple of excerpts:
While Gabbert’s poetry delves into linguistics and cognition and sometimes feels heavy with its self-awareness, it balances this tendency with a mix of physical violence, wry humor and edgy sexuality. Sometimes, as soon as you get your Lacan or Kant head on, the poem starts in on Marx Brothers with Mae West and Betty Paige ...

The sexual double-entendre is thick here, from the description of the joke to the final two sentences, and why not? Humor, like sex, can be a release, a letting go of control, and humor and sex are excellent tools for underlining language’s limits. “Freudian slips on tennis court and cracks her coccyx,” as Marx might say. “Serves her bourgeois ass right,” Marx might respond ...

Reader beware. Even with such emotional and human gestures, The French Exit is no catchy-hooks-got-you-on-the-first-listen sort of book. It intrigues and hides and even frustrates the first time through, enough so that you find yourself wanting another listen, and then another, and as the full complexity of what is happening unfolds, quantum like, you realize you’re holding a dazzling book that richly rewards those willing to sound and puzzle it out.
Thank you Timothy Bradford and thank you H_NGM_N!


  1. i never catch on to sexual references in literature, which is weird, considering the kind of mind i have

  2. by which you mean, the male kind?