Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, now in paperback D. A. Powell's fifth book of poetry, "Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys," explores the darker side of divisions and developments, the interstitial spaces of boonies, backstage, bathhouse, and bar. With witty banter, emotional resolve, and powerful lyricism, this collection demonstrates Powell's exhilarating range.
About the Author
D. A. Powell is the author of a trilogy of books, including Tea (1998), Lunch (2000), and Cocktails (2004). Lunch was a finalist for the National Poetry Series, and Cocktails was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for poetry. His most recent book, Chronic (2009) received the Kingsley Tufts Award and was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award. His subjects range from movies, art, and other trappings from contemporary culture to the AIDS pandemic. Powell is a 2011 Guggenheim Fellow and has received a Paul Engle Fellowship from the James Michener Center, a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Lyric Poetry Award from the Poetry Society of America, among other awards. His poems have been featured in the Norton anthology American Hybrid (2009) and Best American Poetry (2008). He teaches at the University of San Francisco and edits the online magazine Electronic Poetry Review.
“Powell has a perfect ear . . . [His] great subject is passion, in all its stages and manifestations: passion sought, spent, relived in the mind, played out in language.” —Dan Chiasson, The New Yorker
“With his typical wry eroticism, an eagle eye for the places where men converge, and a compass that points always to desire, poet D. A. Powell leads us on a tour through a Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys, from gay bars to bathhouses and into the backwoods.” —Vanity Fair
“Powell’s fifth collection is a stunner . . . Memory, sensuality, and time all tangle with each other—altering each other as they go. Powell takes us beyond the ‘salty declivites’ of a Turkish bath into a wilderness of desire, a ‘region of want.’ There could be no sounder guide.” —The Boston Globe