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Melanie Neilson
Natural Facts

65 pages
ISBN 0-937013-57-9


The natural facts of Melanie Neilson's new gathering are plays of sound performed on stages of sometimes ruminat- ing, sometimes eroding forms. Her poems are lush yet jostling reminders that linguistic acts are culture's natural resource.
--Charles Bernstein

The poems in Melanie Neilson's Natural Facts have the detailed nuance and exactitude of fine verbal etchings, where each "mark" resonates with the vocabulary of attention. They are animated by a peculiarly American tonality (like the songs of Charles Ives) in which a terse directness flourishes over the ground of etymology, like daisies among graves.
--Ann Lauterbach

Melanie Neilson's Natural Facts is a beautiful and scary book. The speech of the past and of the serrated present flies out like debris from some great explosion. Neilson presents us with dazzling conundrums: a reader must confront the seemingly permanent gulf between self and history, one and all. This book is made of eerie harmonies and wrenched homilies, "natural facts" and the flotsam of Americana--a "fringe of artifical tears."
--Rae Armantrout

If Skelton & Stein had a child (unlikely story) she'd be Melanie Neilson. A book to read cover to cover. (I did. Without stopping.) The rhythms keep you happily going (often dimeters with departures). And clarity! Of images. Of assertions. Of observations. Of childhood looked in from. Of natural facts.--Of Erosion finally: [clipped denuded overwritten] signifies in crowded profusion in tiny spaces peeked into.--[How many times time has someone lately called a book of poetry a great read?] "Natural Facts is a great read." What a fine book!
--Jackson Mac Low