Monday, November 22, 2010

Review of Carol Guess's Love Is a Map I Must Not Set on Fire At Lambda Literary

Check out Jocelyn Heath's review at Lambda Literary of Carol Guess's new book, Love Is a Map I Must Not Set on Fire by Carol Guess. Of the book, Heath writes:
It is a risky move by Carol Guess to write more than a simple response to these events; the choice to do so raises age-old questions of the appropriation of tragedy and who has the right to write it. Two things save this subject matter from becoming sentimental or overly political: the authenticity of emotion and the integration of this recent history with the troubled love story of the speaker and Denira, whose relationship is nearly as turbulent as the times in which they live ... One of the loveliest sequences in the book is the quintet of love lyrics spanning pages 16-20, in which Guess makes an announced “detour” from the history of the speaker and Denira to contemplate love and loss for the speaker alone. Though not entirely extricable from Denira, these poems represent the vulnerability that the speaker subordinates to her lover throughout much of the narrative. “I live in the shadow of a breathing volcano in a city with seven days of sunshine a year” refers to more than life in Seattle, especially when followed with the admission that “I can speak of you now to anyone because I’ve stopped wanting anything like what I once wanted from you” (17).
Guess's poem "Detachable Sainthood" is live in the new NOÖ [12]. 

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