3.73 (15 ratings by Goodreads)
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Julie Hanson's award-winning collection, Unbeknownst, gives us plainspoken poems of unstoppable candor. They are astonished and sobered by the incoming data; they are funny; they are psychologically accurate and beautifully made. Hanson's is a mind interested in human responsibility--to ourselves and to each other--and unhappy about the disappointments that are bound to transpire ('We've been like gods, our powers wasted'). These poems are lonely with spiritual longing and wise with remorse for all that cannot last. 'The Kindergartners' begins, 'All their lives they've waited for / the yellow bus to come for them,' then moves directly to the present reality: 'Now it's February and the mat / is wet.' Settings and events are local and familiar, never more exotic than a yoga session at the Y, one of several instances where the body is central to the report and to the net result ('I slip in and fold / behind the wheel into the driver's seat like a thin young thing: / My organs are surely glistening. This car was made for me.'). These poems are intimate revelations, thinking as they go, including the reader in the progress of their thoughts.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 84 pages
  • 152.4 x 208.28 x 10.16mm | 113.4g
  • University of Iowa Press
  • Iowa, United States
  • English
  • 158729964X
  • 9781587299643
  • 2,415,608

Review quote

The poems in Julie Hanson s delightful "Unbeknownst" are natural and shapely, with a subtle architecture that you inhabit all the more fully because you hardly notice it. Their language is relaxed and exact, pervaded by an understated and touching humor, and yet the poems hover on the edge of mystery, the mystery of thought. They move in directions that are surprising and unpredictable but that in retrospect seem inevitable, as you slowly make out the shape / of all of this, which is to think. "Unbeknownst" is a masterful and moving book. John Koethe"show more

About Julie Hanson

Julie Hanson is coordinator of a food-buying cooperative in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; she holds an M.A. in expository writing and an M.F.A. in poetry from the University of Iowa. Her work has earned awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Vermont Studio Center, the West Chester University Conference on Narrative and Form, and the "Cincinnati Review" and has been published in such venues as the "Michigan Quarterly Review," "New Ohio" "Review," the "Iowa Review," "Volt," "Poetry East," "Tampa Review," and "Booth."show more

Rating details

15 ratings
3.73 out of 5 stars
5 40% (6)
4 27% (4)
3 13% (2)
2 7% (1)
1 13% (2)
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