Song and Dance

Song and Dance

By Alan Shapiro

Houghton Mifflin, Hardcover, 9780618152858, 80pp.

Publication Date: February 2002


Alan Shapiro's seventh collection celebrates art as a woefully inadequate yet necessary source of comfort. "Amazingly sensitive and tough-minded" (Tom Sleigh), the poems in Song and Dance intimately describe the complicated feelings that attend the catastrophic loss of a loved one. In 1998, Shapiro's brother, David, an actor on Broadway, was diagnosed with an incurable form of brain cancer. Song and Dance recounts the poet's emotional journey through the last months of his brother's life, exploring feelings too often ignored in official accounts of grief: horror, relief, impatience, exhaustion, exhilaration, fear, self-criticism, fulfillment.

About the Author
Alan Shapiro has published twelve books of poetry, including "Night of the Republic", a finalist for the National Book Award and the Griffin Prize, and "Old War", winner of the Ambassador Book Award. In 2014 Shapiro was awarded a North Carolina Award for his body of work. He teaches at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.