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Ben Doller

Wesleyan Poetry Series

2015 • 100 pp. 3 illus. 6 x 9"
Poetry - American

$24.95 Hardcover, 978-0-8195-7586-9

$19.99 Ebook, 978-0-8195-7587-6

Check your ebook retailer or local library for ebook availability.

Doller’s work is complicated and fascinating; and what internal force it comes from-I do not know. Instead of a story, he gives us clues for our own insight, and... [continued in Reviews below]”—Grace Cavalieri, Washington Independent Review of Books

A sonic boom at the root of language and dissent

A politico-linguistic problem, a conflicted hairstyle, and a conflict-bound drone, Fauxhawk works in the space where dissent becomes materialized, ironized, and commodified. Engaging drone optics, redactions, renditions, comedy, and cinema, Ben Doller wrenches exuberant music from the drone of the everyday. The citizens in these poems are fraught in their passivity, both ashamed of being and of being surveyed. Occupied by the material forces conspiring against poetry, Fauxhawk takes on the economics of writing, university bureaucracies, and complicit injustice. The poems in Doller’s thrilling new collection attempt to find their own tone amid the blare via formal innovation, carving a space where presence is signified, in hopeful and clarifying resistance. An online reader’s companion is available at

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“Doller’s work is complicated and fascinating; and what internal force it comes from-I do not know. Instead of a story, he gives us clues for our own insight, and in this way we get to define the poem instead of having the poet do it for us. It’s not calculus and it’s not narrative but something in between.”—Grace Cavalieri, Washington Independent Review of Books

“Doller wrenches exuberant music from the drone of the everyday and takes on the economics of writing, university bureaucracies, and complicit injustice.”Publishers Weekly

“A riveting and rambunctious collection of new poems by one of America’s most innovative poets. The experimental encounters the historical in these raucous yet deftly written poems of modern-day dissent.”—Sonja James, The Journal

“Radical musicality and conceptual urgency merge in these new poems by Ben Doller. From a ‘translation’ of Hopkins’ ‘The Windhover’ into a sonnet on drone warfare to the redaction of military documents in the poem ‘Pain,’ Fauxhawk will change the way we conceive of literary practice for years to come.”—Srikanth Reddy, author of Voyager

“Hilarity overcomes wit in this deft cultural feast of verbal play and snappy form. Doller has “updated” the poetry “interface” with semiotic streaks that pulsate through acoustic layers of paradigmatic élan. Hold on to your aesthetic hat as a cool, fresh wind is blowing.”—Charles Bernstein, author of Recalculating

“Ben Doller distills the chatter of American babel into a fractal argot as barbaric and incantatory as Whitman's yawp. Fauxhawk is a metapoetical critique—sometimes cheeky, always biting—of the linguistic detritus that clings to our projection of self against the bleak landscape of the 21st century. 'Amphibians fasten your windholes,' Doller's latest will blast an incisive hole into your conventional notion of a lyric subjectivity.”—Carmen Giménez Smith, author of Milk and Filth

“The manic language in these poems has a quality of suspicious sensitivity. Is there such a creature as a fox-hawk? If so, these poems would represent both fox and hawk, sparring with grace and terror in relation to each other.”—Fanny How, author of Second Childhood

From the Book:

There go those thirties, not in making,
but in consuming the reappropriation
of Indonesian plywood embossed

with the Swedish flag. Shout it out: a passable
enterprise, we enjoyed it, flat-packed
for the premier and only tick of relocation +

ultimately crammed in a context unununlike.
Sometimes a system completes a subsequent
system. Sometimes you need a triple negative

to persist. Mostly dead language is all
you get to get. I don’t think I can hack
it tomorrow. How to ship my model ship

to you, how? Look at this having + what
more: the will to be had. Look at this this,
redescribe the current potential, flaking

as it is pronounced incompatibly. Sausage
Queens of the Inland Empire. The casings
shellac cuz intestines R gross. Frankenstein

clomped so Edgar Winter could Keytar
an albino hailstorm. Frankenstein yowled
a way to tell Percy Bysshe he die. I select

the veneer that most accurately reflects
my inner fleshtone. And strip the screws
that make it cabinet. And strip the screws

that make it close. And turn the thing not
to be turned. And build a bag of sawdust
headweight. And nail the nonincluded nails.

And graft and graft to appendage 17. And
swallow the screws when the neighbors
are occupado. And abridge the instructions

with a hearty heehaw. And heft the lith
with a herniated heave. And join the jaw
with woodglue and wait. And sand the joint

with the shell of a snail. And where the hell
do I get the snail. And practice is this modular
obsolescence. And fashion a shelf to hold itself.

BEN DOLLER is the author of Dead Ahead, FAQ, and Radio, Radio, winner of the Walt Whitman Award. Along with the poet Sandra Doller, he has published two collaborative books. He is an associate professor of writing and literature at the University of California, San Diego.

This project is supported in part by an award from
National Endowment for the Arts

Tue, 15 May 2018 13:32:16 -0500