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"Everything is hot when taken / out of the body and into town." If maps could have weather, I'd say: here's a map of that journey, from the body into town and back. If a map could have sound—regional dialect sung by a shape-shifter "real buddy-buddy with the multiple / inlets." The Bo Diddley epigraph sets the tone, but Heron/Girlfriend is a woman’s song. "Everyone looks / into my hollow and hollers / their own names. / I give holy hell / back in pieces." It's hot.
The title is a warning: you are entering strange territory. True,
there are cars, highways, groceries, but a jacket "slips off/ a
shoulder in lieu/ of safety" and "animals/ stay on like the dark,/
drawing it." You won't regret being drawn into this fabric of short
lines and long imagination.
Heron/Girlfriend's searing and provocative diction, evokes warm whiskey, sweet, sweet, and then the inhaled scorch, your eyes moistly kaleidoscopic: "something leery in your mouth:" Darkly cautionary tales disguised as lubed up alien body parts. Tynes writes not of the body--it is not the "perfect glass" or "the city"--but from the body; which is to say the human; which is to say these are words your eyes don't simply glance over, but words that you finger, handle, and sit with; which is to say they hold you fast. Like when your cousins let them hang out in the basement on one condition – "you say one word, you're out, we're serious"-- these poems escaped with the snakes and betrayals they couldn't shake. They are a house where yesterday an empty lot used to be. But Jen likes strangers. She lives in a crystallized The. Her hawk is buzzing "School" and "ISBN" but she listens to lakes instead. She thinks everyone ought to. Lean-mean and cut, like six-pack eye candy for dinner, these lines go straight to your head. You are going to love this book. Are you the "Man in/ the wilderness" who "thinks he falls/ in love with something"? Are you the "darkened body of the crane" who is "always reserving a little water"? Are you the other "boat of bone"? It is no matter. Jen Tynes is a brilliant poet. She is going to kick your face in.