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September 2004
72 pages  

6 x 9
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Barry, Quan
Second book by an acclaimed young poet. This volume features more of Barry’s refined brilliance and delicate lyricism, cast in a more meditative mode.

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Quan Barry is the author of three previous poetry collections: Asylum, winner of the Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize; Controvertibles; and Water Puppets, winner of the Donald Hall Prize in Poetry. She is also the author of the novel She Weeps Each Time You’re Born. Barry has received two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts in both poetry and fiction. She is professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
“Barry offers up a difficult but necessary poetry best described as a study in contrasts. . . . Recommended . . . for feminist and academic collections.”—Rochelle Ratner, Library Journal, October 1, 2004

“The poems in Quan Barry’s new book, Controvertibles, similarly take disparate topics and by paring them achieve a new level of understanding of the self in the world. . . . The book’s energy level remains tirelessly high throughout.”—Rain Taxi, Winter 2004-2005

“An experimental book with considerable zip. . . . An authentic lyricism burns through to great effect.”--Cold Mountain Review

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Pitt Poetry Series Table of Contents
Poetry Read a selection from this book

Controvertibles features more of the refined brilliance and delicate lyricism of this poet, cast in a more meditative mode. Throughout, she examines cultural objects by lifting them out of their usual settings and repositioning them in front of new, disparate backdrops. Doug Flutie's famous Hail Mary pass and Rutger Hauer's role in Blade Runner are contextualized within the Tibetan Book of the Dead. Bob Beamon's world-record-setting long jump in the 1968 Olympics is slowed down and examined in the style of The Matrix's revolutionary bullet time. Samantha Smith, Richard Nixon, the Shroud of Turin, Igor Stravinsky, the largo from Handel's Xerxes, the resurrection of Lazarus, and the groundbreaking 1984 Apple Computer Super Bowl commercial are among the many disparate people and objects Barry uses to explore the multifaceted nature of existence.


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