by Gerald Locklin. 2001. Showerhead Press * pob 5506 * sherman oaks, ca 91413
Book Review by Michael Basinski
A small collection of new poems in a small chapbook that could fit in your shirt pocket except that it is bound with sandpaper so you can read while sanding the callous off your left foot or while sanding your finger tips before you begin your nightly safe cracking. But let us venture into this fine, fine collection of new poems by Gerald Locklin, Emperor of the subconnonical of American poetry. These poems are short poems, quick poems, poems that explore and celebrate the humor, surprise and irony of life and language, when obvious life becomes language and lit and poetry. They are poems of our lives, things that happen that are transformed into poetry, thoughts that you think but pass. Locklin writes them down for poetry springs from living in the poems of Gerald Locklin and his quick wit is a pleasure for all. Now, after I leave a book like this, all things become poetry. And to heck and hell with all the gymnastics and olimpdicks of overly worked wrought poetry, poetry where the metal fags-out from over manipulating masturbation. Yes, all things are the poem. This, friends and readers, makes them art, a radical and powerful form of intrepid art that breaks open the oak doors of high culture cathedral and brings the worship of the gods back to drinking buckets of freshly brewed beer. For instance, let me quote in its entirety, Locklin’s poem: “Was Charles Bukowski A Greater Writer than William Shakespeare?” No.