If This Is Paradise Why Are We Still Driving

If This is Paradise Why are We Still Driving

ISBN: 978-1930068704 Published May 1, 2018 Available at Amazon and Small Press Distribution

Brendan Lorber

“Brendan Lorber sits at an ancient East Village window sill–a time traveler adept at the patterns of emotional cataclysm, a Chesire Cat mediator between science and what air believes in…’the world’s, not flat, it’s bubbly.’ To eavesdrop in the petri dish of New York City, is to be presented with a million stories that want some privacy…’the whatsit, and the hole, in the bag, it falls through.’ In these concise poems beamed into focus by wickedly honed undercurrents, Lorber captures our cities of concrete and happenstance in koan after koan, bundled by catchfalls we barely remember, there, at the turn of the page, containing keys to other portals. Lorber gives us continual nightfalls that keep us primed in the embers of morning. This book is a love song, to the timelessly urbane minutae and its gathered appendages masquerading as you, out there…’I see you humanity / and raise you.’ Indeed, shift your rise, paradise, and find me.” —Edwin Torres

“I’m psyched on Brendan Lorber’s use of a line that’s broken into phrases/feet, leading to unexpected syntactical twists. You get set up for one meaning, then taken around another corner. One hears O’Hara across the spaces between phrases/feet and sometimes the Williams of the variable foot. Sometimes shorter phrases sculpt exact tone-of-voice and meaning, and the line is also great as a philosophical reasoning method. Technique aside, the poems are playful, pained, deep, erudite, vernacular of now, and funny. Lorber himself remains mysterious. What happened? you say, then, Maybe I don’t need to know. ‘We don’t address the origins The origins address us.’ This is a really good book for thinking, which is probably what it’s about.” —Alice Notley

“Hearing the great Brendan Lorber anoint someone ‘the Ansel Adams of bathroom mirror selfies’ gives me license to call this new book the Flow Chart of Midwinter Day, or the ‘Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking’ of ‘Second Avenue’: Lorber–whose poetry is gregarious, profound, syntactically opulent, and emotionally generous–has assembled a fiesta of koans, flights, and moody amalgamations, all narrated with a bliss-oriented, rhythmically-propulsive, death-haunted insouciance.” —Wayne Koestenbaum