[01/11/2022] That Was Now, This Is Then by Vijay Seshadri
Graywolf Press, paperback
Publication Date: January 11, 2022
Publisher Marketing: The brilliant new collection from Vijay Seshadri, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning 3 Sections
No one blends ironic intelligence, emotional frankness, radical self-awareness, and complex humor the way Vijay Seshadri does. In this, his fourth collection, he affirms his place as one of America's greatest living poets. That Was Now, This Is Then takes on the planar paradoxes of time and space, destabilizing highly tuned lyrics and elegies with dizzying turns in poems of unrequitable longing, of longing for longing, of longing to be found, of grief. In these poems, Seshadri's speaker becomes the subject, the reader becomes the writer, and the multiplying refracted narratives yield an "anguish so pure it almost / feels like joy."