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Geoffrey G. O'Brien (Author)

Available worldwide

Paperback, 112 pages
ISBN: 9780520268876
March 2011
$26.95, £21.00
Other Formats Available:
Geoffrey G. O’Brien’s third collection opens with a set of lyric experiments whose music and mutable syntax explore the social relations concealed in material things. O’Brien’s poems measure the “vague cadence” of daily life, testing both the value and limits of art in a time of vanishing publics and permanent war. The long title poem, written in a strict iambic prose, charts the disappearance of the poetic into the prosaic, of meter into the mundane, while reactivating the very possibilities it mourns: O’Brien’s prosody invests the prose of things with the intensities of verse. In the charged space of this hybrid form, objects become subjects and sense pivots mid-sentence into song: “The sun revolves around the earth revolves around the sun.”

Vague Cadence

Bohemian Grove

Poem Beginning to End

Left Behind

Poem with No Good Lines

Failed Catalog

Forms of Battle

Three Years

The Other Arts

White of the Eyes

Folie à Deux


Old War Injury

Ecstatic Norm

Having Since Moved On

Restricted Palette

The Sütterlin Method

Dizzy Procession

Street Cry

To Be Read in Either Direction

Geoffrey G. O’Brien teaches in the English Department at the University of California, Berkeley and at San Quentin State Prison. He is the author of Green and Gray and The Guns and Flags Project, both available from University of California Press.
“The New California Poetry series has served poetry as Silicon Valley serves the software industry, offering consistent innovation, and O’Brien’s Metropole is one of the best of their books.”—Ed Skoog Los Angeles Review Of Books
“Ambitious and highly self-conscious poems. . . . If O'Brien's poems are becoming increasingly resistant to, if not combative with, their readers, their rewards are also growing richer for readers willing to engage in the poems' arguments.“—Publishers Weekly

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