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Cover for Holoholo


Poems (Pitt Poetry Series)

Barbara Hamby


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Holoholo is the Hawaiian word for walking out with no destination in mind. In the three sections of this book, Barbara Hamby walks out into the current American chaos with its inferno of wars, street violence, apocalyptic fantasies, and racial tension. Fueled by an American lingo that embraces slang, Yiddish, street talk, and the yearning to be able to describe her moment in time, these poems encompass the complicated past, difficult present, and unknown future. Every foray offers a glimpse of the world constructed from one woman’s collage of consciousness.

Praise For Holoholo: Poems (Pitt Poetry Series)

Past Praise for Barbara Hamby:

“[Hamby] has cultivated a polyglot idiom all her own, of anecdotes, erudition, and American pop culture. She combines a deadly serious love for the power of language with irreverence; she leaps across historical periods and yokes unlikely referents.” —Women’s Review of Books
“Barbara Hamby’s poems are wild, outspoken, seriously funny, motor-mouth rambles that take us through hoops of association to places both unexpected and unimpeachable. This collection offers a generous helping of poems so crackling with references and busy with verbal energy you might feel them buzzing in your hands.” —Billy Collins
“Hamby’s poems are good-natured, gossipy, and fun . . . She attempts to render in verse the near chaos of perception that typifies human consciousness as it careens through a lifetime’s worth of unruly accident.” —Yale Review

University of Pittsburgh Press, 9780822966586, 96pp.

Publication Date: February 23, 2021

About the Author

Barbara Hamby has published seven books of poetry, most recently BirdOdyssey and On the Street of Divine Love: New and Selected Poems. She was a 2010 Guggenheim fellow, and her book of linked stories, Lester Higata’s 20th Century, won the 2010 University of Iowa John Simmons Award and was published by the University of Iowa Press. She and her husband David Kirby edited the poetry anthology Seriously Funny. She teaches at Florida State University where she is distinguished university scholar.