Poetry might be that iguana that runs over the rooftops of a dead-end street, devouring juicy mangos while the neighbors want to trap it and serve it up at dinner time. Without a doubt, Jeremy Paden has found a dwelling place. Good poets have that ability to make and remake worlds, to take us to other dimensions with a surprising naturalness. “Must we always fight / to own by merit / the madness that is ours?” Paden asks us. And it is precisely this madness that he embodies in a revealing bestiary where lizards, iguanas, hares, rhinoceroses, etc., reside with other characters in a unique synchrony. Paden is the angel of abandoned houses or the one that sifts through language to find the bones of Dürer or Nero. Where will Paden take us in this raft? LIke a strange Charon that lights an eternal bonfire with the ashes of God. This book offers a wonderful trip, one where we dive in and come away, as Rojas wrote, with just a kiss of foam, or, to recall the ineffable Simic, one where we hear the laughter canned at the scene of our own crucifixion. Congratulations on this unsettling self-portrait whose first sketches, as Zurita would say, already belong to the ocean of speech.
Author Jere,y Paden
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I want to spend my mornings in the sun.
I want to climb to the tops of trees
when the first rays light up the world
and stay there hour after hour
until that fire chases the aches
and pains from my body so I can,
once the joints and marrow are
warmed through, move about – to have
to spend half a day hunting other
animals, ugh!, so much energy
wasted in camouflage and venom
–no, not that life – it’s better
to stuff myself on flowers and spend
my days under the sun in a bougainvillea.