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In this, her first collection since the career-spanning Mad Dogs of Trieste (2000), Janine Pommy Vega writes with quiet command of her life and times and of our shared American present. Here are protests against the depravities of the prison system and the Washington war machine––political poems that are fierce yet never strident and that always begin in closely observed human particulars. Here too are tender lyrics about family, lovers, and friends; celebrations of the natural and domestic worlds of upstate New York; and remarkably vivid letters home from spiritual sojourns through Italy, Germany, and the former Yugoslavia. “Vega’s poems reflect a deeply felt and aching knowledge,” wrote Publishers Weekly of her previous collection. “They ‘go’ (as Kerouac said) their own patient, unadorned, and dignified way.”
Honest, passionate, and exhilarating, Janine Pommy Vega brings her own voice to the Beat pilgrimage. She is changed by her journey through the world, and she changes the world through her words.
––American Book Review