Hamlet's ghost wandering the halls of a Vegas motel, a street corner ventriloquist using passersby as dummies, and Jesus panhandling in a weed-infested Eden are just a few of the startling conceits Simic unleashes in this collection. "Few contemporary poets have been as influential-or inimitable-as Charles Simic" (New York Times Book Review).
These poems are strange, dreamlike things with a lot of classical references throughout. They're short, written in accessible language and a little bit creepy. I liked them- well, most of them.
Here are some examples specifically for October:
That same light by which I saw her last
Made me close my eyes now in revery,
Remembering how she sat in the garden
With a red shawl over her shoulders
And a small book in her lap,
Once in a long while looking up
With the day's brightness on her face,
As if to appraise something of utmost seriousness
She has just read at least twice,
With the sky clear and open to view,
Because the leaves had already fallen
And lay still around her two feet.
A tree spooked
By it's own evening whispers,
Afraid to rustle,
Bewitched by the distant sunset
Making a noise full of deep
Like bloody razor blades
And then again the quiet.
The birds too terror-stricken
To make their own comment.
Every leaf to every other leaf
A separate woe.
A finger of suspicion.