The importance of music—specifically, rock and roll—cannot be overstated when considering this novel. From Iggy & the Stooges to the MC5, Beautiful Music is a veritable crash course in Detroit’s lasting legacy on the music scene; the clanging guitars and screaming singers changed the wiring of an entire generation.
In the preface to his latest book, Census, Jesse Ball tells readers the book is not about what it is about. He wanted to write a book about the loss of his brother who lived with Down syndrome; in the end, he wrote a book about a traveling, dying man who must perform a census of an unknown, magical nature.
“Idiophone is a dance between Fusselman and her reader; Fusselman is always fully leading, sometimes at a stately pace, but most often at one that is allegro, even allegro vivace.”
Since the very start of the Trump Presidency, American poets have rapidly mobilized in news-making numbers and noises to participate in protests across geographical and generational divides.
“The brilliance of her engagement with this simple structure is an honesty as to composition’s value, or at least, the ways we ordinarily conceive of its value.”