Odes of Roba
Clark Coolidge

ISBN: 0-935724-46-X

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"Poems written in Rome, October 1984-February 1985" is the note below the manuscript title of Odes of Roba ("Roba" meaning "stuff" in Italian slang), a period which marked Clark Coolidge's first experience of Italy, particularly Rome, an immersion of five months in an architectural complex and cultural dilation long imagined, often heard extolled by Philip Guston, Alvin Curran and others, and now finally present in the dailiness of the poet's life as a Writer-in-Residence at the American Academy in Rome. In bursts of energy and concentrated excitement, Coolidge catches the verbal light in its multiple bounce off physical presence and cognitive angle alike. Rome is catalyst, oracle, the sound of water. As in his long poem At Egypt, written in response to a trip up the Nile River, Odes of Roba preserves this heterodox poet's nominative expedition into the present foreign ancient flux.

Copyright 2003 Geoffrey Young. All Rights Reserved