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Gregory Vincent St. Thomasino:

Pygmy Forest Press
PO Box 591
Albion CA, 95410


The title, referring to a test that is its own explainaint, is in one sense an apt description of these self-referential poems, but in another sense they are not, since they often have a haiku-like ellusiveness/allusiveness, the meaning-ripples spreading out in all directions so they "mean" everything and nothing, The irony in that title is functional, and is part and parcel of the beauty of these works:

     EKPHRASIS No. 16

     Mechanic a
          Spit o'
     Ecstatic re

     Quiver a 
          Gog stride 

The collection consists of 15 poems, in a nicely produced booklet. These pieces have an intimate and enigmatic quality that keeps this reader going back to them.--John M. Bennett

At the crossroads between intelligence and intuition, where the mind grasps to contain experience but does not have the logic or syntax, and the entire being is filled with sensation and strange knowing, the creative impulse rises. We are taught very early, though usually not directly, to ignore such impulses and direct attention toward a knowable object. St. Thomasino understands that to allow the creative impulse to culminate in action is a means of expanding the field of perspective and thereby knowledge in its deepest sense, of insight. These selections from his Ekphrasis series are brilliant examples of that understanding, and like all great poetry are doorways to that deeper knowledge. The words seem to rise from that critical moment, they are utterances of the voice and mind in awe of direct experience of unlimited sensation. Sometimes the words fall into a phrase that seems to make logical sense, that relates something specifically, sometimes not. It doesn't matter. It is the impulse, the life shining through these poems that's important. Certainly, an exhaustive analysis would reveal a variety of interpretations, but something would still be missing. Ordinary syntax cannot contain their light. From "EKPHRASIS No.11":



A Ha a ha

--Jake Berry

A selection of St. Thomasino's ongoing series of state-of-the-art language-centered poems full of locutions like "Will o' sea" and "Out'r quart'r lo!" Consequently, one seems in tho ages of discovery at once: Columbus's, Drake's & Cook's; and ours.--Bob Grumman

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This review originally appeared in TapRoot Reviews #5,
Copyright Burning Press 1994, 1996.

Contact the editor, luigi-bob drake, at Burning Press