Streets in Their Own Ink (Paperback)
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 9780374529918, 88pp.
Publication Date: March 21, 2006
"Streets in Their Own Ink . . . has a gritty realism infused with a sense of the marvelous." --Edward Hirsch, The Washington Post
In a city like that one might sail
through life led by a runaway hat.
The young scattered in whatever directions
their wild hair pointed and, gusting
into one another, they fell in love.
-from "Windy City"
In his second book of poems, Stuart Dybek finds vitality in the same vibrant imagery that animates his celebrated works of fiction. The poems of Streets in Their Own Ink map the internal geographies of characters who inhabit severe and often savage city streets, finding there a tension that transfigures past and present, memory and fantasy, sin and sanctity, nostalgia and the need to forget. Full of music and ecstasy, they consecrate a shadowed, alternate city of dreams and retrospection that parallels a modern city of hard realities. Ever present is Dybek's signature talent for translating "extreme and fantastic events into a fabulous dailiness, as though the extraordinary were everywhere around us if only someone would tell us where to look" (Geoffrey Wolff).