The Regatta in the Skies
Selected Long Poems

Laurence Lieberman

"Deeply moving . . . The work of a distinguished poet writing at the top of his form."—Grace Schulman

Reviews

"He has the grace to make his voyage into the eye of the world and bring back a communion for the reader. Lieberman is a poet who serves the spirit of life."
American Poetry Review

"Laurence Lieberman represents the new generation of cosmopolitan poets whose themes and imagery cover every region of a wide experience. A poet of strong and brilliant creative energy, he bears comparison to no other American poet of our time. Like Walt Whitman or the French poet St. John Perse, Lieberman is best enjoyed in long strong drafts, not in quoted particles."
St. Louis Post-Dispatch


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Description
The Regatta in the Skies is a wonderful, complex collection of the best long poems from each phase of Laurence Lieberman's distinguished but still developing career, from his midwestern American childhood to his travels to the exotic landscapes of the underwater world, Japan, and the Caribbean.

In a number of recent poems, Lieberman view islands of the West Indies through the eyes of intriguing local artists. Using cross-cultural relationships on individual and national levels to create a new kind of "poetry as witness," he weaves stories into the poems. No less engaging than his subjects are his cadences, ordered in intricately textured lines and original syllabic stanza patterns.

"Orange County Plague: Scenes" focuses on the plight of the orange trees in southern California, blending motifs of politics, social history, civil rights of ethnic minorities, and the mythology surrounding them with descriptions of nature and landscape. This linked progression of seventeen poems, structured like a sonnet sequence, establishes the primacy of place in Lieberman's continuing canon.

The longest poems deal with Jamaica, but others take as their settings a number of the smaller Caribbean islands, including Montserrat. In the poem "The Factories of Bay Leaf and Lime" Lieberman celebrates instinctive beauties of Montserrat's culture and workplace, and helps memorialize its national character at a time when the entire country is threatened with extinction by a volcano.

The Regatta in the Skies is a bold and unforgettable collection from a poet at the top of his form.

Page count: 192 pp.
Trim size: 6 x 9

 



Paper
List price: $19.95
978-0-8203-2035-9
1998

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Laurence Lieberman is a professor of English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is the author of eleven volumes of poetry, including Dark Songs: Slave House and Synagogue, and his work has appeared in the New Yorker, American Poetry Review, and the Hudson Review.