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Shadow Play, a novella in verse by Jody Bolz
Hypnotic and provocative by turns, Shadow Play retraces a journey across Asia in search of the marriage that faltered in its wake. Part love poem, part elegy, Jody Bolz's new book enacts the conflict between memory and estrangement. In his introduction, novelist Vikram Chandra writes: "an extraordinary act of literary ventriloquism...a conversation among the many selves that were once bound up in love. The poem, in all its formal inventiveness and variety, is an incarnation of the ineluctable passage of time itself."
"Shadow Play explores a failed early marriage in an altogether original way, combining the momentum of memoir with the music of poetry. This book is lush with landscape and with psychological insight. 'What sense will you make of the heart's slow progress...?' Bolz asks, even as she shows us the answer."--Linda Pastan
"Here, finally, is a travel poem worth the ticket. Had it been written just after the trip occurred, we would have gotten the sights but none of the light and shadows-the sounds but nothing of how time and living reverberate in, through, and between us. There is a hard-won stillness at the center of this book, the kind of stillness a reader finds when a fine poet has figured things out and hasn't been crushed by the discovery. That grace is the heart of Bolz's Shadow Play."--Cornelius Eady
"Which of us hasn't been tormented with thoughts of someone we loved long ago? 'I shall tell you of the first root of our love,' says Francesca to Dante in Canto V of his Inferno. Shadow Play explores such longing between a sensible married woman and a ghost from when she was young, back-packing through Asia. Bolz writes that she is 'looking for a route / through time: a silver line / extending itself steadily / even as it disappears.' The resulting poetry is lovely and accessible."--John Balaban
Jody Bolz was born in Washington, DC, and attended Cornell University, where she studied with A.R. Ammons. After receiving her MFA, she worked as a journalist for two major conservation organizations (The Wilderness Society and The Nature Conservancy) and taught creative writing for more than 20 years at George Washington University. Her poems have appeared widely in such magazines as The American Scholar, Indiana Review, North American Review, Ploughshares, Poetry East, Prairie Schooner; and in many literary anthologies. Among her honors is a Rona Jaffe Foundation writer's award. She edits the journal Poet Lore, founded in 1889, and is the author of A Lesson in Narrative Time (Gihon Books, 2004).
ISBN: 978-1-62549-275-3, 80 pages, $18.00