Belmont

Title:
Belmont
Poems
Stephen Burt
Price$16.00
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“[Belmont] explores themes of adulthood, parenthood, and personhood with tenderness, intelligence, and wonder.”Publishers Weekly, starred review

“[D]ominated by virtuosic turns and eclectic imaginings made all the more charming by Burt’s constant self-reflexive address to the reader as co-conspirator.”New York Times Book Review

About the Book

The new poetry collection by Stephen Burt, “one of the most gifted poets of his generation” (Frank Bidart)

Our skills are finally in demand.
If you mock us, Pan,
In whom we also believe, do it
As gently as you can.
                        —from “The People on the Bus”
In Belmont, poet Stephen Burt maps out the joys and the limits of the life he has chosen, the life that chose him, examining and reimagining parenthood, marriage, adulthood, and suburbia alongside a brace of wild or pretty alternatives: the impossible life of a girl raised by cats, the disappointed lives of would-be rock stars, and the real life to which he returns, with his family, in the town that gives the book its name, driving home in an ode-worthy silver Subaru. Can a life be invented the way a poem can? What does it mean for a precocious child, or a responsible grownup, to depict the world we want? With wit, beauty, tenderness, and virtuosity, these poems define the precarious end of extended adolescence, and then ask what stands beyond.

“Burt, the finest critic of his generation, has struck out on his own. It is time now to celebrate Burt’s other real work.”—Lucie Brock-Broido

Additional Reviews

“Stephen Burt’s Belmont is a celebration of the ordinary: walks in the park, breakfast cereal, the Subaru, the Swingline stapler. . . . [A] sobering and mature collection.”San Francisco Chronicle

"Joy is new each time it happens—and it happens a lot in these poems. . . . Burt dismantles all cultural, psychological and literary idée recue pertaining to childhood, identity, gender."Los Angeles Times
"Belmont is lyrical yet contemporary, a fascinating exploration of everyday life."Largehearted Boy