Still Life In Milford
Wierd, sharp, moving and macabre, this is another highly original collection of poems from the author of cult classic, The Undertaking.
In Still Life in Milford, Lynch casts the cold eye we are told to on life and death, history and memory, the local and the larger geographics. Examining the dynamics of faith, remembrance, and intimate conduct, these poems are informed by end times, tribulations and visions that make up the ordinary enterprise of daily life.
Colloquy and narrative, soliloquy and tribute, Still Life in Milford engages the full register of the poet's voices as elegist, eulogist, obituarist, straight man and passer-by to achieve a difficult and inimitable harmony.
Praise for Still Life In Milford
With one ear to the ground and another to the heavens, Lynch renders poems that echo mortality's solid thud.Publisher's Weekly
Thomas Lynch's Still Life in Milford is an impressive addition to a body of work already noted for its rich, humane recording of "the everyday mysteries" of life and its passing. Beginning with a meditation on the closeness and intimacy between art and memory, life and death, Lynch pursues these themes through colloquy and narrative, soliloquy and tribute. "Recollections of / the dead, the dying and the grown or gone" dominate the book, as do reflections on how the "ineluctable modalities" of the dead remain as presences in "the lives we live" ("Morveen Notebook"). Adapting stories from his life as undertaker in Milford, Michigan, and painful personal testimony, Lynch--without irony--questions the use of contrived word and ritual in our denials of death and the dead. Rarely sentimental, these poems are particularly evocative when questioning the power, privilege, and legitimacy of poetry to ever come face to face with grief without falling into a stylised, elegiac formula for denoting how the dead are remembered. Acknowledging, in one poem that "love and grieving share the one body", Lynch is also disturbingly precise about the deepest, most private, unsayable conversations we have with the dead which "leave the heart broken" ("Iambs for the Day of Burial").David Marriott, Amazon.co.uk Review