Date:         Wed, 4 Sep 1996 07:25:05 -0400
From: Joe Ross 
Subject:      Re: New from Buck Downs Books

        A Must Have . .

                        Sonnets of a Penny-A-Liner

                                Poems by Mark Wallace
                                Prints by Lawley Paisley-Jones

        Orders to: Buck Downs Books
                   P.O. Box 50376
                   Washington, D.C. 20091

        "The road to wisdom / has lots of stores and restaurants"

        Mark Wallace's wonderfully sharp, self reflexive, and darkly
humorous sonnets are wisdom teeth stolen from the golden mouths of
metaphysical husksters, penny-a-line journalists, late 20th century
loners, liars, and poetic hit-men.  Death and the double keep Wallace
company on his forays into the tumultuous twister of the American
psyche. Whether playing a ghostly stranger from a Burrough's cut-up or a
Kafkasque desk clerk "chopping off fingers and facts," Wallace is always
the witty, wandering versifier behind the dry jibe and existential stool.
His poems and essays have played a major role in helping to define what
has become post "language" poetry.

                                                   -Charles Borkhuis

        In this new collection of poems, Mark Wallace shows that the
obstensible strictures of the sonnet form can be liberating, can be an
enabling constraint allowing the thought to branch and scan.  A
distinct sensiblity emerges here, one that is preoccupied with a past 
that interweaves with the inexplicable details of daily living, and 
which struggles with the effort to establish human connection against
the odds of indifference and unthinking reflex.  Rounding out the words
are Lawley Paisley-Jones's highly evocative digitized images.

                                                   -Daniel Barbiero

        Mark Wallace creates a poetics of paradoxes.  The reader is
stunned by the sheer intelligence of it, yet there is warmth and an
almost frightening vulnerability.  Mark Wallace is a visionary who
refuses to deny what he sees.  His poems are sensitive and important.

                                                   -Susan Smith Nash

from: Sonnets of a Penny-A-Liner

        Poetry doesn't care who loves it
        warehouses howl of debris, random fetters
        of work, business seizes ground
        Who could possibly be superior
        when countries are filled with all they don't know
        Whoever comes forward to take the mantle
        in the history of kings is a fool and I hate them
        Stand me in my house
        Stun me to know where art is a prison
        A graver stain is in the blood
        then who will be the next and latest greatest thing
        I'll drink to complaint and go on plying
        trade turned to a wing, above this boat,
        to fly so not to float