Book: Open House , by Mark Doty, Mark Doty, ISBN10: 1555973825, ISBN13: 9781555973827, Graywolf Press, June 2003, Paperback
Mark Doty has received many awards and honors for his poetry, including the National Book Critics Circle Award and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He divides his time between New York City and Provincetown, Massachusetts.
Twenty Writers Define Home In All of Its Complexity and Variety
"Where do I live? I don’t have a ready answer, not really, but I’ve realized there’s something I like about not having an answer. And indeed something of that spirit—a curious, open engagement with the now, in its slippery and uncertain character—animates this book."
—Mark Doty, from his Introduction
In a shifting world, concepts of place and home take many forms. Mark Doty gathers an impressive group of writers to describe their contemporary sense of home. Victoria Redel lives her teenage years from inside a fifteen-pound body cast—loving and hating the loss of her body; Barbara Hurd finds that within a cave, the absence of all light allows for clarity of vision; and Andrea Barrett wipes filth from a sill in her Brooklyn apartment only to realize that the dirt is actually “ash of buildings, ash of planes. Ash of people.” Surroundings—walls, trees, or states of mind—are defined by our reactions to them. These essays are about how the mind can create a home—for a moment, or for a lifetime.
Contributors include Bernard Cooper, Carol Muske-Dukes, Deborah Lott, Elizabeth McCracken, Mary Morris, and Terry Tempest Williams.
Describing the chaotic, polyglot world we live in now, one that disconnects us from the past and from one another, Doty asks, "So where do I live? I don't have an answer, but I've realized there's something I like about not having an answer... Sometimes home is found in unexpected places." National Book Critics Circle award-winner Doty has gathered 17 writers to consider those unexpected places, among them Andrea Barrett, Carol Muske-Dukes, Mary Morris and Paul Lisicky. For Morris, a sometime travel writer, the answer is the subways beneath New York City's streets. Barbara Hurd writes of caves, of finding herself "squeezed into a cleft in 350-million-year-old limestone...sixty feet under the earth," where she experiences a moment of sudden, unexpected intimacy with another caver. Other equally surprising "homes" are gracefully described in this fine collection. (June) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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