Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Snarge by T.P. Perrin

Snarge by T.P. Perrin
Wasteland Press, Shelbyville, Kentucky
93 pp, $12

Review by Mary Rice

Snarge is the best kind of experimental poetry: imagination seeking forms to fit it. These include a one-scene play, a passage from Chaucer wittily mangled ("Spellchecking Chaucer"), imaginary dialogues ("Duets from Otherwhen") and a Senate hearing, as well as poems with words crossed out ("Revising Gertrude") and all over the page ("June" and "The Extraterrestrial Ouch"). The ultimate is a 17-page verbal smorgasbord called "A Thanksgiving Garland or Hekkaidekalogia."

Yet there is also respect for tradition. In the last section of "Three Brags":

You'd have us believe Laird Cregar
standing in Betty Grable's doorway,
his face half in shadow, half in

light (effect Ed Cronjager
took a whole hour's shooting to get right),
will be more evil, scarier, even more real,

if the shadow is purple,
and the suit he wears is brown,
and his necktie green? What are you, nuts?

The poems are variously humorous and thought-provoking, concerned with nature and human nature, history and artistry.

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