I Live In A Hut By S. E. Smith – The Rumpus.net

I LIVE IN A HUT BY S. E. SMITH

REVIEWED BY JEFF ALESSANDRELLI

September 12th, 2012

J.D. Salinger’s Holden Caulfield famously said that the mark of a great author is whether, after reading their work, you want to call them up to talk, want to gab with them about nothing much and everything in between. You want to be “terrific” friends with them. S.E. Smith’s debut collection of poetry pontificates on ponies of darkness and big slutty bears, on the variety of pilgrims the world contains and the existence of vertical lakes that stand, woozily, straight up and down. The first poem of the book’s third section is entitled “Fuck You,” a title that is followed by the declaration: “That is one thing I am not here to say.” Based on all of the above, it goes without saying that I would like to converse with S.E. Smith on the telephone. I would like to gab with her about the unwholesome habits of sexually active bears, about what doth make a pilgrim. I would like to discuss with her the unhealthy influence “Bingo Gossip” has on our society and why exactly “Enormous Sleeping Women” are a part of a “frightening story” that threatens to not end anytime soon.

Comprised of three sections—“Parties,” “Beauty” and “Devastation”— in a plethora of free verse forms, I Live in a Hut thus bears the standard hallmark of most volumes of contemporary poetry. What distinguishes Smith’s work, than, is its insouciance and wholly unabashed nature; these traits of hers were no doubt one of the primary reasons why Matthea Harvey chose I Live in a Hut for the 2011 Cleveland State University Poetry Center First Book Prize.

via I Live In A Hut By S. E. Smith – The Rumpus.net.

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