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The Orchestra of Wind Chimes

Geoffrey Jacques

Poetry, African American Studies, Detroit

Made in Michigan Writers Series

Published: March 2023
ISBN: 9780814350386
Pages: 104 Size: 6 x 9
Published: March 2023
ISBN: 9780814350393
Pages: 104 Size: EPUB

This powerful collection of poems draws on American and African- American experimental lyric traditions, pushing language and form to their limits. Geoffrey Jacques's poetry inspires deep thought, taking up themes of music, psychology, and literature. This work embodies the potential of poetry to forge new connections between aesthetic expression and the often onerous facts of human existence. Poems such as "Still Life" and "Detour Ahead" produce a juxtaposition of inspired poetic form and rich, complex realities of life, addressing topics of joy and love, race, class, politics, and the aesthetics of the everyday. With a contemporary and sophisticated tenor, Jacques lends his uniquely moving and provocative perspective to advancing discourse in these critical topics. For all of the social themes they address, these poems equally serve to investigate modes of producing poetry in general. "Ars Poetica," "The Problem of Speech Genres," "The Subject of the Poem," and many others directly challenge traditional notions of form through intentional and intricate reflexive commentary. Through these poems, Jacques has achieved a balance between form and function, allowing readers to embark on a rhythmic journey of expression, language, and human existence.

Geoffrey Jacques is a poet and critic whose work has been published internationally. His poetry has previously appeared in Callaloo, Hambone, MiPoesias, Black Renaissance Noire, Fence, Miramar, Askew, O-Blek, Tidal Basin Review, and Long News in the Short Century and in several anthologies including Abandon Automobile: Detroit City Poetry 2001 (Wayne State University Press, 2001) and What I Say: Innovative Poetry by Black Writers in America. Tuscaloosa. He has also published three books of poetry, including Just for a Thrill (Wayne State University Press, 2005). His other works include A Change in the Weather: Modernist Imagination, African American Imaginary. A former MacDowell Colony fellow, Jacques is also a teacher and author of works about literature, culture, politics, film, and the visual arts.

‘What happened to the beautiful language?’ asks Geoffrey Jacques’s opening line of The Orchestra of the Wind Chimes. The answer is it is here in poem after poem of his new collection containing clean, clear, compressed, meditative, and intuitive lines that will leave a haunting sensation lingering on the periphery of your mind.

– Bill Harris, 2011 Kresge Foundation Eminent Artist

A Change in the Weather, Just for a Thrill, Geoffrey Jacques has always been attentive to what was in the wind but was never one simply to look at the wind sock and follow the drift. His has always been a writing on the storm, a writing at the edge of night. And now his Orchestra of Wind Chimes is tolling our times.

– Aldon Nielsen

The Orchestra of Wind Chimes by Geoffrey Jacques never captivates by hardening itself into the province of fatigue but susurrates according to grammar by moonlight and never presents itself according to the isolated folly that is day-to-day captivation.

– Will Alexander