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An Ocean Large Enough, Poems by J.L.Cooper
An Ocean Large Enough by J.L. Cooper is vast and copius indeed-containing life, nourishment, danger, and awesome beauty.
"Imagine that Miro and Jung set out together on Kerouac's road. They become good friends and, over many fire-lit conversations, they decide to collaborate - to write a book of poems together - to meld dream-logic, surrealism, and the mysteries of personal experience into a poetic tableau. A few days later Lorca joins them - he says, 'we also need 'deep song.'' The three abandon themselves to the work and they accomplish it. Their title for the book: An Ocean Large Enough.The truth of J.L. Cooper's fine first collection lives inside this fable. The poems here are passionate, lyrical, astute; they are alert witnesses to the inexplicable complexities and mysteries of human love, loss and experience, and they are full of deep song."-Susan Kelly-DeWitt, author of The Fortunate Islands and Spider Season
"An Ocean Large Enough by James Cooper allows us to be quiet and understand how 'rippled silk runs the river's length/where water touches shore.' Cooper knows a 'deeper water calls,' and there is almost a celebration in 'the certainty of death' for the natural world. I'd put his book beside Whitman's and Blake's on a small table in a room for sleeping. This is a book to free 'large rocks imprisoned in clay,' like so many dreams trapped underwater. It'd be there to wake up and remember small drops of rain on a windshield like a country song, and those tears still dissolving truth somehow, but sweetly this time."-Russell Thorburn, author of Somewhere We'll Leave the World
"A reverent cadence, an uplifting, something of the spirit inhabits these poems. But not to worry. James Cooper grounds us in his words, referring to an ex-husband, sugar-free candy, a urinal, windshield wipers - making sure we don't float away. I love these poems. They are so clearly truthful, personal, encouraging. They guide (perhaps shove) us to see through another pair of eyes, consider life from a different point of view, and invite us to become wiser as a consequence."-Heather Folsom, author of Philosophie Thinly Clothed and other Stories
"It must be lonely being human, so many kinds of hunger, a crow says at the end of James Cooper's beautiful poem, Yolo Crows. And of course he's right. But these poems, with their lush language, their music, their wisdom and lovely surprises, are a kind of nourishment that make an art of loneliness and a banquet table for those born human."-Julia B Levine, Small Disasters Seen in Sunlight, winner of the 2015 Northern California Book Award in Poetry
"From the knowing humor of Yolo Crows, to the warmth and love in Off-White Walls, and the bittersweet Broken Gate, I hear and feel rhythms, pairings, progressions of sounds, vowels in a stream, bouncing from rock-to-rock then flowing in a rush. Rhythms enhance imagery and meaning as they weave and bob like a sled on icy snow, then glide smoothly at just the perfect moment. There is both freedom and formality in J.L. Cooper's deeply personal, yet universal, poems."-Brian Mann, composer and Platinum recording artist