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Dismantling the Angel
Winner of the New Measure Poetry Prize
Free Verse Editions
Edited by Jon Thompson
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Praise for Dismantling the Angel . . .
“In these precise, dream-like poems, Eric Pankey peers through the clarifying lens of metaphor and parable to meditate on mystery, human sympathy and the divine. Here, the shifting image of fire both articulates and consumes our sense of the vastness of history and the ineffable nature of divinity. Elsewhere, a lemon, “transformed by one’s attention to it, is a spark pent up in a barn, is long shadows on a glacier. The lemon waits to be recognized like the inscrutable event of a miracle.” Or later, writing on complexities of compassion, Pankey describes a fox, terrified and snarling in a Havahart trap: ‘I had to shake him out of the cage with more violence than I’d have preferred.’ With Dismantling the Angel, Eric Pankey shows once more why he is one of the American poets I admire most. These are such deeply moving, humane, and thoughtful poems.”
“‘This is important, thus I repeat myself,’ insists the speaker in the title poem of Eric Pankey’s Dismantling the Angel. And repeat himself he does. As he should, shuddering out such elusive and luminous sentences as ‘The fire retains only its shape, its shifting, ambiguous, wind-shredded shape.’ As he should, since his poems, more than anyone else’s, take the shape of fire, all its ambiguity and wind-shreddedness, all its likeness to poppies in the wheat.”
—H. L. Hix
About the Author
Eric Pankey is the author of nine previous collections of poetry, including most recently The Pear as One Example: New and Selected Poems 1984–2008 and Trace. His work has been supported by fellowships from the Ingram Merrill Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, the Brown Foundation, and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He is Professor of English and the Heritage Chair in Writing at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, where he teaches in the MFA and BFA programs in Creative Writing.