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We Look Like This

Dan Burt

We Look Like This
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Categories: 21st Century, American, British
Imprint: Lintott Press
Publisher: Lintott Press
Available as:
(Pub. Apr 2012)
£9.95 £8.96
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(Pub. Apr 2012)
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  • Description
  • Excerpt
  • Author
  • Contents
  • Reviews
  • We look like this after things fall apart;
    The painting is the autopsy report
    From an inquest where war took the part
    Of coroner…

        from ‘Modern Painters’
    With CD from the Poetry Archive

    We Look Like This anatomizes how history, violence, power, lust and mortality work on us. Burt's formal, muscular language evokes a world of war, want, cruelty and hope, as well as childhood among ‘tough Jews’ in Philadelphia, dominated by his father Joe, son of Ukrainian immigrants, butcher, boxer and, late in life, coastal fisherman. Joe's last world, Barnegat inlet and the sea off the New Jersey coast, are counterpoint to and salvation from hard streets for father and son.

    Cover painting Frank Auerbach, Head of Gerda Boehm, 1978–9 (detail). Oil on board, 56.5 x 71.1 cm (22 1/4 x 28 in). Private collection. Copyright © Frank Auerbach, courtesy Marlborough Fine Art. Photograph courtesy of Yvonne Burt.
    Who He Was 1–5
    Death Mask
    Slowly Sounds the Bell

    Certain Windows


    Death Rattle
    Blind Date
    Texaco Saturday Afternoon Opera
    All the Dark Years
    For John Crook
    Homage for a Waterman
    Facsimile Folio
    John Winthrop’s Ghost

    Poetry Reading
    After Lunch
    Little Black Dress
    Pas de Deux
    Winter Mornings
    Sie Kommt
    The Faithful
    End of the Affair

    Decorating the Nursery
    Wine Circle
    Blue Rinse Matrons
    Three Sonnets on the Coup de Grâce
    Uphill to the Right

    Modern Painters
    A Brewing Tale
    The Lesson
    Un Coup de Dés
    Beside a Cove
    The Institute

    Dan Burt was born in South Philadelphia, read English at St. John’s College, Cambridge and attended Yale Law School. A lawyer and businessman, his poetry and prose have appeared in Poetry Review, PN Review, TLS, The Financial Times, The New Statesman, The Sunday Times, Granta, Commonweal, Clutag Press Five Poem Series, ... read more
    Praise for Dan Burt 'Admirably gutsy and hearty... revealing a gift for lively mimetic narrative'
    Rory Waterman, TLS
    'His language is terse to the point of brutality; the verbs ferocious... his core conviction, formed by the history of the twentieth century and a lifetime in a non-literary world, is of "the curtain falling on the Enlightenment".' Elaine Feinstein, PN Review  'the verse flexes muscle after muscle. Burt is excellent on place and occasion... The writing... can hover and dance. It has genuine grace. Certain Windows is a very good book...'
    George Szirtes, Poetry Book Society
     'Full of hard-won wisdom and beautiful lines, it's testament to the transforming power of poetry.'
    Suzy Feay, the Independent
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