Native Guard by Natasha Trethewey
My rating: 1 of 5 stars
I'd never read this poet, or heard of her before her appointment was announced on June 7th, 2012, as the latest Poet Laureate. Congratulations to her, and for the Pulitzer! She seems, from reading this one book, a nice person. Keeping with recent tradition, I can't quite think of any other reason for her appointment. She would seem to write the kind of poetry, memorable neither in phrase nor line, meant to memorialize rather than mean, say, or do anything much. The only thing more blandly familiar than the subjects here are the structure and language of these poems, even when she chooses an unusual form. Maybe someone not only still in the American South, but interested in it, would find all of this more engaging. For me this all felt terribly dutiful and dull, dull, dull.
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