Seb Doubinsky's short, quiet poems are little explosions of epiphany. "A rose is a rose but not a rose." "20,000 lightnings in the night but no illumination." A worn down, broken toy is actually a sign that the child is growing up. A bird not chirping makes the poet realize that the bird is indeed there and we need the poet to describe it and sing its song. These poems soothe, startle and illuminate as great poetry should. And like any real literature, I can read them over and over and make new connections, have new revelations. 'California Raisins, ' the fantastic long poem that concludes the collection, is a meditation on the poet's long awaited return to California. It is exactly the mythical California that he remembers, with "Kerouac's melancholic fog" and "Sandburg trains" and yet California is also an empty parking lot with "Safeway brown bags and Gucci shoeboxes." The poem is both a celebration of this beautiful, sunny state and an elegy for the failures of culture. Doubinsky's little explosions indeed illuminate.
Author of Bridge, Already Here and ARK Seb Doubinsky's collection, Spontaneous Combustions catches us off guard with a riveting arsenal of language--and with the 'shock and awe' of everyday life. These pristine and startling snapshots happen upon us, then at a moment's notice, enters our interiors. These spare and sleek poems are crisp testimonials to the flaws, follies, and fragile shadows that follow through the hallways of joy and sorrow at the very epicenter of what it is to be human, "My bones rattle like drums." This smallest moments ask for this poet's astute gaze and keen sense of observation, baring witness to the most ordinary and spontaneous of daily moments. Doubinsky compresses riffs with cadence of language and etches the searing ontological chemistry down to the basic elements. These poems tease and torque with images full of both harmony and discord: "shock of knuckles against a jaw," then offers a door inside a door-and dares us to enter "where spring has just left the room" and "this poem is two minutes late." These poems are vibrant with energy, and remind us of the irrational, dangerous, complex and evocatively rich small moments of our lives. Doubinsky sings us into our own nakedness--sizzles and parses the silence, grace, and exacting rituals of nuance
Author of In the Event of Full Disclosure and Psyche's Weathersshow more