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Natalie Diaz’s Postcolonial Love Poem has been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for poetry, and Percival Everett's Telephone has been named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

The Art of Recklessness

Poetry as Assertive Force and Contradiction
Dean Young
In Dean Young's sprawling and subversive first book of prose on poetry, The Art of Recklessness, imagination swerves into primitivism and into surrealism and finally toward empathy. How can recklessness guide the poet, the artist, and the reader into art, and how can it excite in us a sort of wild receptivity, beyond craft? "Poetry is not a discipline," Young writes. "It is a hunger, a revolt, a drive, a mash note, a fright, a tantrum, a grief, a hoax, a debacle, an application, an affect. We cannot make the gods come. All we can do is sweep the steps of the temple, and thus we sit down to our desks. When art strives for the decorums of craft, it withers to table manners during a famine." This is the smart and emotional argument by one of America's boldest and imaginative poets.

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The first work of prose by Dean Young—a sort of poetic manifesto arguing for the efforts and effects of the subconscious

About the Author

Dean  Young
Credit: Tracy Hall
Dean Young is the author of The Art of Recklessness and nine collections of poetry, including Primitive Mentor, embryoyo, and Elegy on Toy Piano, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. He teaches at the University of Texas at Austin.
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  • “Only 30 pages in, and I feel like I’ve swan dived into the swirling, dangerous waters of Young’s unbelievably complex collector’s brain. . . . This is a different kind of book, one that might be the most important kind.”—HTMLGiant
  • “If you are looking for a classy thought-provoking rant, if you want something to stir and shake you up and perhaps inspire you to start writing poems (if you don’t already) then The Art of Recklessness is prescribed.”—The Compulsive Reader
  • “[A] fabulous book. . . . Do poetry editors a favor: read the whole book.”—The Literary Review
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