- Kind: Perfectbound
- Pages: 94
- Language: English
- Date Published: October, 2021
- ISBN: 978-1-953252-37-1
Eric Hoffman’s “sharp-eyed and agile” poems are “teeming with surprise”. —Patrick Pritchett
Hoffman’s work “deserves to be better and more widely-known”. —Eileen Tabios
“The quality of the verse… is undeniable; there are great pleasures to be had in Hoffman’s lines”. —Jason Ranek
“The particularities of a deeply felt life are brought into focus in [his] lovingly and carefully worked language – its handsome and quiet music, set down as a tangible event within the flow of time”. —Burt Kimmelman
Scribes tend to mercantilism. The peasantry pursues starvation.
The unlettered aristocracy tends to militaristic fame
to defend, they say, the civilian population
from foreign aristocrats in search of venal glory.
Vaults are the graves of dead currencies.
All is beggarly outside the master’s kitchen.
The most insignificant arrear serves as the small mean
between the barest subsistence and personal luxury.
They devour themselves and succor on freedom,
the price of vigilance.
Plunder and murder, quietly legalized,
keeps the grease from cobwebbed guillotines.
The jackbooted patrolman roars
the absolute right of righteous annihilation.
Eric Hoffman is the author of several volumes of poetry and the editor of a number of books on subjects as various as comics, music, and television. Most recently, he edited Conversations with John Berryman (University Press of Mississippi, 2021) and a new critical volume of Philip Pain’s Daily Meditations (Spuyten Duyvil, 2021). His articles and essays have appeared in journals worldwide, including American Communist History, The Chicago Review, Fortean Times, Rain Taxi, and Smartish Pace. His translations of the haiku of Ozaki Hōsai were published in Chrysanthemum, Frogpond, and Otoliths. He lives in Connecticut with his wife and son.