Portrait of the Alcoholic by Kaveh Akbar

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Read Portrait of the Alcoholic Online Free - "Was it Jung who speculated that alcoholism might be an attempt at a material solution for a spiritual problem? Kaveh Akbar seems able to contain both--he's a demotic, as well as a spiritual, poet (the only type of either I trust). Each word in this little book might rise up from somewhere deep in the earth, but they turn into stars." - Nick Flynn

"In Islam prayer is not transactional, poetry is not divorced from the quotidian and portraiture is embraced only in the abstract. And yet here in Kaveh Akbar's book, entreaty is earnest, aimed at the human and particular more often than the divine but at the same time the language and form elevate themselves to the fevered register of desperation. Yes, sure, fine, you would think that a Muslim writing about being a drunk would have to adopt unconventional approaches, but drunkenness in the Islamic literary tradition is a long and time-honored metaphor. For what? Abandonment to God, a cessation of the self--but not so here; no. Here it's real, it's coarse, it's dangerous. The reason we Muslims do not pray for things is that it is similarly dangerous for one to call God's attention onto oneself. But for Kaveh Akbar, whose very name means 'poetry, ' it is a risk every poem takes with gusto. And speaking purely for myself, these poems give me life because 'for so long every step I've taken/ has been from one tongue to another.' Be careful, little brother. God's got His eye on you now." - Kazim Ali



Title : Portrait of the Alcoholic
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1943977275
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 45 pages


Reviews


Hannah rated it ★★★★★

February 04, 2017

When you pick up a book of poems, you want it to read the way this one does.


مهسا rated it ★★★★★

October 31, 2017

این کتاب برای شاعری متولدِ ایران است و خدای من! شاید گفتنش کمی عجیب و بیرحمانه باشه، ولی بهترین اشعاری بود که تا به حال خوندم؛ بهترین اشعار از بین آنهمه تجربهی مختلفِ کهن و مدرن. حقیقتا تصور نمیکردم سیمای شاعری جوان و ایرانی در غرب،اینقدر محبوب و شناختهشده باشه و چقدر غافل بودم! وقتی میخریدمش،حس خا...


Ellie rated it ★★★★★

November 08, 2017

Akbar's struggles as a recovering alcoholic are transformed into works of art that transcend (while honoring) his individual demons. The language is powerful and the poems moving. Even if you've never experienced addiction, his poems address the hunger of life, the desire for deep experience, the...


Brandon rated it ★★★★★

February 13, 2017

Such precise, stunning verse. Sings from highs and lows, gets you in your center. I'm going to be thinking about this for awhile, and look forward to his full-length collection


Robert rated it ★★★★★

February 06, 2017

A simply stunning mind is on display in this brief volume that showcases Akbar's willingness to stare unflinchingly into a painful past and find the beauty within those moments. Kaveh Akbar is a hugely important voice and one that I look forward to reading for many years to come.


Meg rated it ★★★★☆

March 19, 2017

Layers working through some of these beauties!!! "Lord, I meant to be helpless, sex– less as a comma, quiet as cotton floating on a pond..." "Listen to me, faithful silence: somehow we've become strangers. Growing up I kept a housefly tied to a string tied to a lamp. I fed him wet Tic-Tacs and idly ass...


Sally rated it ★★★★★

March 20, 2017

Every poem here is a stunner.


Colleen rated it ★★★★☆

March 02, 2017

I prepared myself to be underwhelmed with this, having just picked it up on a whim. What initially felt mediocre at best rose in a subtle and often beautiful crescendo. Words that were often raw and hungry, sometimes delicate and tender, with nostalgic reflections on youth and honest self-depreci...


John rated it ★★★★★

February 05, 2017

Absolutely stunning.


Jeremy rated it ★★★★★

February 09, 2017

A magnificent debut that not only challenges faith and alcoholism as pieces of oneself, but as entities of their own.





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