Ocular Proof

Omnidawn. Oct. 2016. 96p. ISBN 9781632430250. pap. $17.95. POETRY
OrangeReviewStarNational Poetry Series winner Ronk (Vertigo) here offers an elegant, supremely intelligent investigation of photography both as document and as proof that we cannot fully capture the moment through art, memory, or any other means. What is represented in an Atget photograph, for instance, is not the tree itself but "more of what light and wind/ and Paris are in the exact year it was," and an image may show scuffed stairs, even suggest the smell of dust, but can't get at "the unlocatable bereavement left on the stairs to be carried up when you go." What's left? Our minds grappling with the world, as Ronk shows photographer and viewer grappling.
VERDICT Highly recommended; this is both intellectually astute and lit-up, sharply observed verse.
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