Under the Sign

Under the Sign

by Ann Lauterbach


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A new collection from the author of Or To Begin Again, a finalist for the 2009 National Book Award in Poetry

Ann Lauterbach is one of America’s most innovative and provocative poets, acclaimed for her fierce, sensuous and intellectually charged poems.  In this, her ninth book of poems, Lauterbach pursues longstanding inquiries into how language forms and informs our understanding of the relation between empirical observation and subjective response; worldly attachment and inwardness; the given and the chosen. The poems set out not so much to find cogent resolutions to these fluid dyads as to open them to the fact of unknowing that is at the core of all human curiosity and desire. A central prose section tracks along a meditative edge, engaging the risky task of opening the mind to the limits of apprehension; the final section evokes, in the figure of the instructor, the essential contemporary question of how information becomes knowledge.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780143124184
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/24/2013
Series: Poets, Penguin Series
Pages: 160
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Ann Lauterbach is the author of eight collections of poems, most recently Or To Begin Again, and a book of essays, The Night Sky: Writings on the Poetics of Experience. She has been, since 1991, Co-Chair of Writing in the Milton Avery School of the Arts at Bard College, where she is Ruth and David Schwab II Professor of Languages and Literatures.  Named the Sherry Distinguished Poet at the University of Chicago for 2012, she is also the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Fellowship.  She lives in Germantown, New York.

Table of Contents

I Glyph

A Reading 3

Testing the Waters 6

Glyph 9

The Translator's Dilemma 11

Enigma of the Cat 12

Triptych (Van Eyck) 18

Untitled (Portrait) 22

Landscape without View 24

Night News with Fake Zebra 27

After Newtown 30

Ugly Sonnet 31

World Cup 32

Meanwhile, Storm 33

Il Pleut 35

Domestic Modernism 36

Utensil 38

Harbor Song 40

Basement Tape 41

Under The Sign 43

Alice in October 44

The Tears of Eros 45

II Task: to Open 51

III Dear Instructor

Untitled (Spoon) 83

Of Spirits 85

Letter (In Praise of Promiscuity) 87

Untitled (Against Perfection) 89

Zero & A 91

A Plan 98

Untitled (Fate) 99

A Fold in Time 102

At/Or (Raul Zurita) 104

Untitled (The Disinherited) 106

Beauty and Consolation (Richard Rorty) 111

Untitled (The River) 114

Untitled (The Neutral) 120

To the Given 126

Classical Augury 129

Some Elements of the Poem 131

Song of the 0 (Emerson "Circles") 137

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