3 Sections

3 Sections
Vijay Seshadri
Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry
“Confront[s] contemporary dilemmas with caustic humor.”The New Yorker

About the Book

The long-awaited third poetry book by Vijay Seshadri, winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry

First I had three
apocalyptic visions, each more terrible than the last.
The graves open, and the sea rises to kill us all.
Then the doorbell rang, and I went downstairs and signed for two packages—
            —from “This Morning”
Vijay Seshadri’s new poetry is assured and expert, his line as canny as ever. In an array of poetic forms from the rhyming lyric to the philosophical meditation to the prose essay, 3 Sections confronts perplexing divisions of contemporary life—a wayward history, an indeterminate future, and a present condition of wanting to out-think time. This is an extraordinary book, witty and vivacious, by one of America’s best poets.
Praise for Vijay Seshadri:
“Seshadri is a son of Frost by way of Ashbery: both the high-frequency channels of consciousness and the jazz of spoken language are audible in these poems.”—The New Yorker
“This is a strong, almost reckless voice turning dark experience into an unrelenting sense of possibility. From the rhyming stanzas to a long prose meditation, the power of casual declamation holds sway.”—Los Angeles Times Book Review

Additional Reviews

A Publishers Weekly Pick of the Week
"Deft yet direct, often funny and yet alert to existential quandries, this third outing . . . could be the most versatile, as well as one of the most successful, volumes this year.Publishers Weekly, starred review
"[Seshadri] is so talented, so able, and writes with such panache."—Booklist
"Truly original. . . . [Seshadri] attempts the impossible and succeeds. . . . I read it twice; it was worth it.”Washington Independent Review of Books
“Anyone concerned about the state of American poetry should put aside his or her thesis notes and pick up a copy of 3 Sections. . .Mr.Seshadri is talented and assured enough to lay his self-consciousness bare on the page with a generous, fluid, avuncular wit reminiscent of W.H. Auden.”The American Reader
“We have no benchmark of a contemporary volume that deliberately and obsessively evokes the metaphysical. 3 Sections does so ingeniously and playfully, without philosophical rhetoric or didacticism, through an array of characters and personas engaged in whatever it is that engages them. . . . In his engagement with the political, Seshadri appears to be following W. H. Auden’s footsteps with his own recipe of wit, satire, and gravity.”American Poetry Review
"Vijay Seshadri is a skeptic and a seeker, and the speaker, the philosophical hero, of these beautifully understated, intellectually ambitious poems if also one—wry, self-scrutinizing, keenly observant, abashed, bemused, conflicted, prone to melancholy questions, troubled by his own thoughts, susceptible to daydreaming, determined to figure things out, to sum them up, to find words for them. 3 Sections is a rare adventure in consciousness."—Edward Hirsch
"An extraordinary naked modern consciousness, an intensely experienced dislocation, a beautiful intelligence: Seshadri's poetry is exhilarating."—Jonathan Franzen