2020 LAMBDA LITERARY AWARD FINALIST
The Revisionist & The Astropastorals
This vital collection, the author’s collected poems, restores to print and prominence the work of the elusive poet Douglas Crase, best known for his award-winning collection The Revisionist.
MacArthur “genius” Douglas Crase is best known for his invocations of the American landscape and Transcendental tradition. Out of print since 1987, The Revisionsist has been enough in some opinions to establish him as one of the most important poets of his generation. Its influence persists, says The Oxford Book of American Poetry, as a “formidable underground reputation.” By combining that book with Crase’s recent chapbook, The Astropastorals, Nightboat Books brings Crase’s underground reputation to a wider audience for the first time in thirty-two years.
This is such anticipatory, massively omniscient edging work. It’s a tone you’d expect a poet to hit here or there but Doug hits it always and I don’t know that he “knows,” or his poem knows but there’s a temptation as a reader to want to stay in it always. He’s not saying it’ll be okay. But even, not meekly, that there are patterns.
Thinking here has been arrayed with grace enough to belie its density. Crase’s linguistic domain is at once tantalizingly abstract yet present and palpable. His poems are alive on the tongue while being read and even more so days later, as a recollected fragment surfaces unbidden amid the flux of thought.