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Pool [5 choruses]

Pool [5 choruses] is a finalist for the 2015 Oregon Book Award! Very honored to be in great company... all finalists listed here.

Pool [5 choruses] is now released and in the world! Many thanks to artist Betty Merken and Laura Russo gallery for the image of the painting "Ascent" on the cover of this book.

"Endi Bogue Hartigan’s Pool (5 choruses) reads as a celebration of the common etymology of text and textile, from the overall pattern of calls and responses that structures the entire book to the interwoven repetitions of arresting oneiric imagery at the level of the line. Phrase after phrase jumps out, clear, yet also surprising. Hartigan’s linguistic play is almost vertiginous, constantly on the brink of overbalancing—but she never does, instead landing electrifyingly spot-on every time, creating a gymnastics of the page that is simply exhilarating. And behind it all, always, is her music, making connections deep down at the level of conversant sound and echoed by the choruses that come in and out with their haunting intimations. Rich and yet fired by the pressure of restraint, this is a book that opens additional dimensions with every turn of the page."

"These gorgeous poems are exercises in presence apposed not to absence but to “slippage,” change, diminution, that humming, hymning poverty. In Hartigan’s bold lyric purview, the political is frankly flush with the lush landscape of phenomena: of lily and pine, of camellia, of roses and starlings, any of which might conceal an election or an economy or a war. Pool [5 choruses] emits a polyphonic incandescence that consumes itself by means of its own mordantly exquisite music. It is an extravagant assertion of lyric citizenship in an unstinting world."

"A book that performs as thoroughly as it proposes we step back, listen, think, and then step in, think, say, so that we're invited to join in the making up of other choruses, one’s pool lends us to accompany our stories. This is a generous and generative book, it's a thrill to be testing its waters, concerned with its singing collections of words."


Thank you to Emily Vogel at Thethe Poetry for her recent review of Pool:
" We must be made slightly uncomfortable by endless possibilities before we can begin to discover them and accept the invitation to play, among the poppies and the slippage, where meanings are found, erased, revised, disintegrated, and elucidated once again not in their layering, but rather between the layers. Hartigan’s collection is a must read, if not only for its portrayals of beauty, then for its success in satisfying the thirst of the intellect."

Publisher's Weekly has reviewed Pool among their May poetry reviews:
"As Hartigan's muscular poems wrestle with interchangeability, so too do their innovative structures challenge its boundaries. Acrobatic and playful, the poems turn back and reflect on themselves, daring readers to consider intention and arbitrariness at once. And yet, the book is wary of the total annihilation of individual meaning: "The slippage that we must avoid is a certain blanketing in which/ the delicacy of perception is lost." Hartigan's poems take simultaneity and expose it: "The news is on, the news is on at the same time as the game, sorry, it's on at the same time, I'm sorry." Individual moments are individual for having been chosen—lifted out of the noise—and Hartigan's poems make the claim that the act of choosing, no matter how choral the result, is of the greatest importance."

Rob McLennan also posted a thoughtful review in The Small Press Book Review.
"The five sections that make up her Pool [5 choruses]—“gallop,” “lily tally,” “Lola, backstage,” “yellow yellow yellow” and “office of water”—are built of poems that extend and pull apart the line, composing lengthy linear stretches in the smallest of spaces, writing poems both choral as in the multiple/polyvocal, and in the elegantly lyric. As she writes in the poem “Flurry series,” subtitled “4 choruses”: “The tree transferred choruses / from eaves to branches—from branches to eaves— / in their slippers and gowns, in their suits and linings and cowboy boot / dresses, in prints and in tresses and costumed sounds—[.]” What appeals most about these poems is how much manages to happen in such a small sequence of moments, moving one to the next to the next, each one sending ripples that continue for miles. Where Hartigan shines is in the lyric disjunction, composing poems that work to explore the seriousness of real events and the weight of how the world sometimes happens to be, all while managing a lightness of line and a spark of phrasing that bounces."

The Conversant March issue has included an interview in which I talk about this book with Omnidawn editor Rusty Morrison.