By Sean Hill
From the poet whose lovely debut was once praised as "transcendent" (Kevin younger) and "steadily confident" (Carl Phillips), risky items tracks its speaker all through North the USA and in a foreign country, illuminating the ways that domestic and position may well inhabit each other with ease or uncomfortably or either at the same time. From the Bahamas, London, and Cairo, to Bemidji, Minnesota, and Milledgeville, Georgia, Sean Hill interweaves the modern with the old, and explores with urgency the connection among go back and forth, migration, alienation, and residential. right here, playful "postcard" poems addressed to Nostalgia and My 3rd overwhelm this day sit down along strong reflections at the immigration of African americans to Liberia in the course of and after the period of slavery. Such variety and formal innovation make Hill's moment assortment either infrequent and exhilarating. half shadowbox, half migration map, half travelogue-in-verse, risky items is poignant, based, and deeply relocating.
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Extra resources for Dangerous Goods: Poems
Hay bales grow heavy in the cart I pull. 50 3. Looking for the misplaced shovel behind the barn door opened out to the world I ﬁnd a corn snake peacefully coiled, drowsing, gray and smooth like creek rocks, his back blotched with marks the color of the old ploughshare rusting beside the barn. 51 4. Snaking, tail and head switching, body dragging, a salamander left his signature, just a ﬂourish with ink spots, drops dripped where feet dipped into mud. Walking ﬂat-footed a raccoon left birth certiﬁcate prints— impish long toes clawed.
I’m sure I can hear the small tug of their knitting—an old necessity. Their silken nest grows. This tree reminds me more of Sir Isaac Newton—a man of keen observational skills—than Adam and Eve and their tree. It’s spring, and I walk home from middle school alone. The caterpillars teem;—they move like streptococci and other cultures jostling in Petri dishes in the decades-old hygiene ﬁlm from health class cast on the white screen that shimmers reﬂected light, blinding us in the dark just after the pictures stop.
I’m sitting here striking keys and wondering. 41 WHAT CAN C OME TO PASS Even in Kyoto— hearing the cuckoo’s cry— I long for Kyoto. —BASHO TRANS. ROBERT HASS A FREEDMAN SPEAKS OF HIS FELLOW, OR FROM MILLEDGEVILLE TO NEW PHILADELPHIA, 1872 Sandy Gannoway gone away from here. That old negro headed across the water with his old lady, son, and daughterin-law. This his home near seventy-two years; —now he going off to Liberia, Land of the Free? But he been free since Sherman came through trailing a crowd of us contraband, us negroes now freedmen—free to stay or wander.