By Richard Hugo
Richard Hugo, whom Carolyn Kizer has called" some of the most passionate, vigorous, and sincere poets living," the following deals a rare choice of new poems, each a "letter" or a "dream." either letters and desires are exact manifestations of alone-ness; Hugo's specified senses of alone-ness, of locations, and of alternative individuals are the forces at the back of his distinctively American and more and more authoritative poetic voice. every one letter is written from a selected position that Hugo has made his personal (a "triggering town," as he has known as it in different places) to a chum, a fellow poet, an previous love. We learn over the poet's shoulder because the city triggers the mind's eye, the friendship is re-opened, the poet's selfhood is explored and illuminated. The "dreams" occur without warning (as desires do) one of the letters; their haunting pictures supply extra intensity to the poet's exploration. Are we overhearing them? who's the "you" that desires?