Monday, June 12, 2017

Bill Bradd's CONTINENT OF GHOSTS Reviewed by Kirpal Gordon

Bill Bradd offers us a portal into a multi-dimensional universe via this book of poems and prose poems. Using Pangea for his metaphor of the undivided self at birth and the death of his mother (when he was two and of whom he has no memory) as our point of departure, we enter “the Continent of Ghosts, where all the people you used to know reside now.” Wearing the mask of the Trojan soldier Aeneas---“stitcher of songs, a wandering performer from occasion to / occasion, hoping for payment of some kind, a room or a meal”---Bradd weaves and re-weaves tales of ancient Greece alongside Biblical events, Native American lore and moments torn from his own life. In addition, the narrator is shadowed by Belial, envoy of Satan, and the many surprise shifts in voice and diction add an element of the kaleidoscopic to this already shape-shifting, interconnecting experience.

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