Pitch: Drafts 77-95 | National Humanities Center

Work of the Fellows: Fiction and Poetry

Pitch: Drafts 77-95

By Rachel Blau DuPlessis (NHC Fellow, 2008–09)

Poetry; American Literature; Women Authors

Cambridge, UK: Salt Publishing, 2010

From the publisher’s description:

Pitch: Drafts 77-95 is a skeptical monument built and reassembled by a continuous folding over itself—tracking an encounter with an edge we might pitch over, with the pitch dark of our time, with our lurching desires to do the necessary work of seeing and understanding.

Anchored by two major serial poems proposing a poetics of the trace and responding to a key work of George Oppen, DuPlessis continues in this fifth book of nineteen poems working with themes of awe and grief, of confrontation with the world as it is and the projection, from the shards, of chips and gleams of another world.

The work is multi-generic, with a dazzling range from proverbs, fragments and interrogations to lists and open-page works. Drafts embodies and exfoliates a poetics of critique inside poetry, producing one of the more distinctive ethical-aesthetic practices in contemporary poetry. Other highlights of this collection are a two-poem dialogue with a work of Ingeborg Bachmann, a rewriting of a work of S.T. Coleridge, and an investigation of the meaning of writing that incorporates a serio-comic playlet between R and her Pen.

Fiction and Poetry / Poetry / American Literature / Women Authors /

DuPlessis, Rachel Blau (NHC Fellow, 2008–09). Pitch: Drafts 77-95. Cambridge, UK: Salt Publishing, 2010.