Description - Landscape With Chainsaw by James Lasdun
James Lasdun's third book of poems explores the themes and tensions of his last two with a new boldness and exuberance, in a series of poems about life in the Catskill mountains outside Woodstock, where the author moved with his family some years ago. Questions of exile and belonging, cutting ties and forming new bonds, figure prominently, as does the struggle to find a viable relationship with the natural world of the mountain wilderness - at once a stunning companion and a ferocious competitor. Out of this - 'the need to carve out a niche for ourselves;/our singular relation to what we love' - rises the book's central image- the chainsaw. Very much a real machine (given to the alarmed poet by his wife), it also comes to form a complex symbol in which all manner of human traits are reflected with an intense, often comical, brilliance. A brilliantly assured, deftly lyrical sequence, Landscape with Chainsaw melds passion with wit, the classical with the quotidian, in a thrilling meditation on history, love, cultural identity and the anxiety of displacement. As an examination of the complexities of deracination and domesticity, it marks the matured genius of one of England
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Jonathan Cape Ltd
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
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Author Biography - James Lasdun
James Lasdun was born in London and now lives in upstate New York. He has published two collections of short stories, three books of poetry and two novels, The Horned Man and Seven Lies. His story 'The Siege' was adapted by Bernardo Bertolucci for his film Beseiged. He co-wrote the screenplay for the film Sunday (based on another of his stories) which won Best Feature and Best Screenplay awards at Sundance, 1997. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in poetry, and currently teaches poetry and fiction workshops at Princeton. In 2006 he won the inaugural National Short Story competition with 'An Anxious Man'.