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A dazzling collection of poems exploring the mental landscape of our moment
Maureen N. McLane’s Some Say revolves around a dazzling “old sun.” Here are poems on sex and death; here are poems testing the “bankrupt idea / of nature.” Some Say offers an erotics of attention; a mind roaming, registering, and intermittently blocked; a mortal poet going “nowhere fast but where / we’re all going.” From smartphones to dead gods to the beloved’s body, Some Say charts “the weather of an old day / suckerpunched” into the now.
Following on her bravura Mz N: the serial: A Poem-in-Episodes, McLane bends lyric to the torque of our moment—and of any moment under the given sun. Some Say encompasses full-barreled odes and austere lines, whiplashing discourse and minimal notations. In her fifth book of poems, McLane continues her “songs of a season” even as she responds to new vibrations—political, geological, transpersonal, trans-specific. Moving through forests and cities, up mountains, across oceans, toward a common interior, she sounds out the ecological mesh of the animate and inanimate. These are poems that make tracks in our “unmarked dark” as the poet explores “a cosmos full / of people and black holes.” From its troubled, exhilarated dawns to its scanned night sky, Some Say is both a furthering and a summation by a poet scouring and singing the world “full // as it always was / of wings / of meaning and nothing.”