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Dobby Gibson
We have to escape while we can.


I'm trying to remember you--quick,


now you try to remember me.


—from "Refuge"


With sheer wit and keen observation, Dobby Gibson's Skirmish puts into conflict the private and public self, civil disobedience and civic engagement, fortunes told and fortunes made. These poems imaginatively, sometimes manically, move from perception to perception with the speed of a mind forced moment to moment to make sense of distant war and local unrest, global misjudgment and suspicious next-door neighbors, the splice-cuts of the media and the gliding leaves on the Mississippi River.

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The new poetry by Dobby Gibson, author of Polar, which "teems with a language so alive and so imaginative that one cannot help but read on with wonder and rapture"—The Bloomsbury Review


About the Author

Dobby  Gibson
Credit: Zoe Prinds-Flash
Dobby Gibson is the author of Polar; Skirmish; It Becomes You, a finalist for the Believer Poetry Award; and Little Glass Planet. His poetry has appeared in the American Poetry Review, the Paris Review, and Ploughshares. He lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota.
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  • Skirmish documents [Gibson’s] own wrestling with the written word.  Fortunately for us, those battles result in some lovely imagery.”—Marianne Combs, State Of The Arts, Minnesota Public Radio
  • “Dobby Gibson’s poetry in Skirmish is equal parts tender, triumphant, exhilarating, disturbing, and thought provoking: it’s fantastic.”—The Corresponder
  • “Dobby Gibson’s first book, Polar, marked him as one of the most talented meditative poets of his generation: unusually adept in syntax, philosophical in spirit, with a commitment to both exploration and coherence. Gibson’s poems in Skirmish work by a kind of sonar: when the speaker of a Dobby Gibson poem says, in a typical epigrammatic moment, ‘On this planet only humans can remove their clothes without fear,’ we are placed in a creative predicament; we must wrangle with the fiction of the proposition itself, and the way it illuminates the actual world of which it is a part. This is a poetry of—in Gibson’s own terms—echolocation, that makes us grapple with the ghosts of speech and world at once.  The poems of Skirmish are both entertaining and troubling, and full of complex contemporary sensibility.”—Tony Hoagland 


This book is made possible, in part, through the Jerome Foundation, which supports new works by emerging artists in New York City and Minnesota, and by the generosity of Graywolf Press donors like you.
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