Flood Editions

Clampdown Review

In new titles on December 26, 2009 at 9:25 pm

Jennifer Moxley’s Clampdown (Flood Editions, 2009) receives an enthusiastic review by Scott Stanfield in the current issue of Ploughshares (Winter 2009-10). As the review concludes,

Clampdown recalls the Yeats of Responsibilities (1914) in several ways: its evocations of the companions of the poet’s apprentice years (Yeats’s “The Grey Rock” Moxley’s “Clampdown”), its reflections on childlessness (Yeats’s “Pardon, old fathers,” Moxley’s “Mother’s Day”), its ambivalence about fame and recognitions (Yeats’s “While I from that reed-throated whisperer,” Moxley’s “Our Defiant Motives” and “The Quest”), its political engagement, its utterly persuasive marriage of traditional form to modern idiom. Responsibilities opened Yeats’s great mature phase; there is no knowing, of course, whether Moxley is on just such a threshold, and in any case such idle predictions are exactly the sort of poetry-as-horserace thinking that much of Clampdown condemns. If she keeps writing books this good, however, she is probably going to have to deal with honor and recognition, whether she likes it or not.

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