Imaginary Vessels

Paisley Rekdal

Paisley Rekdal’s fifth volume of poetry employs multitudinous voices—or vessels—real and imagined: personas and identities that have been manufactured, manipulated, perhaps silenced. A master of precision and sonic beauty, Rekdal studies how public identities become the sites for our own intellectual reductions and emotional reenactments of history—inviting us to consider what constitutes a public monument and how we might simultaneously interrogate and document our times.
The portraits and poems in
Imaginary Vessels restore individuality to the generalized, imbuing particulars with humanity, whether in the form of anonymous skulls unearthed from the grounds of a state mental institution, or of cultural icons trapped in narrowly defined roles. Through inventive lyrics and exciting sonnet sequences, Rekdal explores the possibilities—and limitations—of artistic representation.

ISBN: 9781556594977

Format: Paperback

About the Author

Paisley Rekdal is the author of three works of nonfiction, including The Broken Country: On Trauma, A Crime, and the Continuing Legacy of Vietnam, and six collections of poetry, most recently Nightingale. She is the recipient of fellowships and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the Academy of American Poets, among others. She teaches at the University of Utah and is Utah’s poet laureate.

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