Monday, March 14, 2011

Now out from Otoliths — Marcia Arrieta's triskelion, tiger moth, tangram, thyme

triskelion, tiger moth, tangram, thyme
Marcia Arrieta
80 pages
Otoliths, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-9807651-8-2
$13.45 + p&h

What do the Golden Ratio, Tassajara’s kitchen, and Noguchi’s fascination with form have to do with natural cycles and the written word? In Arrieta’s triskelion, tiger moth, tangram, thyme, language flows between forms and fascinations sharing the elusive nature of sand, bear, and canyon and the infinite enigmas posed by modern physics, the green dragon, and the infinite reversals of Chinese puzzles. Arrieta’s poems are overlapping spheres, vanishing points, circles that reflect her fascination with modern cosmology, aesthetics, and the spirituality of language. — Andrea Moorhead

I have long followed Marcia Arrieta’s poems, impressed by her minimalist approach to language itself, her quiet southwest surrealism—reminiscent at times of the visionary artistry of Georgia O'Keeffe. Her poems are compelling, marked by deft and abrupt turnings, a total mastery of paratactic construction, and a dazzling sense of the landscape of the heart played against that insistent inner voice. Here, at last, they are gathered together, a gift well worth having, a quiet visionary voice which surprises and invites the reader to be attentive. — David Cope

Geometry defines symptoms of reality. Its elements hold in common a range of distances from other presences. In the perpetual imaginary search for probable freshness, what angle offers the most valid view? Marcia Arrieta’s book enacts philosophical inquiry into tangible experience, by way of a series of inductive expeditions. At the intersection of multiple wavelengths are poetic choices of mosaic segments that the poet sculpts into a metonymic actuality that far transcends harmonics of the selves. — Sheila E. Murphy

Marcia Arrieta’s long overdue first volume of poems charts the cycles of language within consciousness by plotting the recurrence of concepts and ideas and of certain words which, planet-like, wander among them. She has, through a process of extreme selectivity, crafted these poems-in-motion, poems on the outer reaches of philosophical thought. These poems are not for the mentally inert, but one willing to “staple the head to the sea” will receive much delight and intellectual stimulation from them. — Celestine Frost

The poems in this book are complex, "intellectually emotional" tangles of observations. Rather than through commas, these short — frequently only one noun long — observations are related to each other through periods, line breaks, empty spaces. They die out instant to instant. But they're also connected by Marcia Arrieta's acute attention, the fingerpointingtothemoon-like unpredictability of her imagery. She is a wonderful observer, for whom the naming process and the names, the things and the silhouettes of their distances, "the literary symbol." /period/ and "sea. clay. tree." belong to the same landscape, where "between the absolute." /period/ "the door is partially open." — Márton Koppány

The full catalog of Otoliths books can be found at The Otoliths Storefront.


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