The Book of Frank (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews


There is something disturbingly pure about this collection of poems. They invoke nightmarish images (a mother turned octopus, ham opining on the dinner table, a giantess that swallows park benches with her...) while the speaker manages to deliver clearheaded sentiment alongside master-of-puppets conviction, but this is exactly what makes The Book of Frank an absurdly delectable read. By turns sparse and immediate, these organic poems unfold into explosive feelings of self-reverence (“Frank knows a/butterfly/who wonders/about her old/caterpillar/friends”) and ecstatic singsong. The constant shifting of voices and the displacing, shrinking and forever reviving of our hero Frank causes us to wake up in a dream in which we are the dream itself, stepping into the sky, riding dandelions and having lusty encounters with chocolate cowboys along the way. -Evan's May Staff Pick, 2014

— From Evan's Picks

Description


Winner of the 2009 Gil Ott Book Award, this expanded edition of The Book of Frank features additional "Frank" poems and an essay by Eileen Myles.

Praised by poet Anne Waldman as a "voyeuresque surreal portrait," The Book of Frank is also, in the words of poet-critic Alan Gilbert, a "candid portrayal of human cruelty and its resultant fantasies of escape."

About the Author


CAConrad is the author of The Book of Frank (Wave Books, 2010/Chax Press, 2009). He is also the author of Advanced Elvis Course (Soft Skull Press, 2009), (Soma)tic Midge (Faux Press, 2008), Deviant Propulsion (Soft Skull Press, 2006), and a collaboration with poet Frank Sherlock titled The City Real and Imagined (Factory School, 2010). The son of white trash asphyxiation, his childhood included selling cut flowers along the highway for his mother and helping her shoplift. In 2011, he was awarded a Pew Fellowship by the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.

Praise For…


"The poems capture moments, and they don’t explain themselves. But, cumulatively, they invoke a sense of what it is like to be almost supernaturally sensitive, empathic, curious, responsive. In short: what it feels like to be a poet, possessed by a muse." Charles Kruger, The Rumpus

"I’ve grown to love CA Conradthe man, the work, and all he attempts and representsbecause he always argues (from the inside of his poems) for a poetry of radical inclusivity while keeping a very queer shoulder to the wheel. His kind of queerness strikes me as nonpolarizing, not intentionally but because of the fullness of his exposition, a kind of gigantism that seems to me to be most deeply informed by love, and a tenderness for the ravages and tumult of existence." Eileen Myles

"Conrad’s construction and airing of Frank’s reality isn’t just dream tittering. Instead, these poems show imagination as a vehicle of outright salvation..." Mike Young, NOÖ Journal

"At once charming and frightening, The Book of Frank will certainly take the top of your head off, and it might just replace it with something better." Noah Eli Gordon, Boston Review

"Conrad's approach is a welcome change from high-minded poetry that steadfastly ignores the body in all its dumb, limiting materiality...Only by engaging this body, by forcing ourselves to travel through the shames and humiliations of its portals, can we achieve transport." Christopher Schmidt, BookForum

Product Details
ISBN: 9781933517490
ISBN-10: 1933517492
Publisher: Wave Books
Publication Date: November 2010
Pages: 166
Language: English