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Poetry. By turns playful and serious, the poems in Dora Malech's long-awaited second collection, SHORE ORDERED OCEAN, revel in the inherent tensions and pleasures of sense, sound and syntax, reveal the resonance in the offhand utterance, seek the unexpected in aphorism and cliche, and tap into the paradoxical freedom of formality. This is an extraordinary collection of highly idiosyncratic poems which explores place, politics, the body, love, art, and more. It is bound together by an urgent, physical and beguiling relationship with language itself.
"These are wonderful poems. Dora Malech knows just about everything there is to know about the risky music that lives in language. But she also knows about Truth and Beauty. She's far too wise to try and make these last two rhyme, but she constantly tempts them into conversation."--Bill Manhire
"If you'd wondered where the dappled things had gone, how the tisket and tasket ended up, what the fickle, freckled, couple-colored pieces of life were up to, look no further. Dora Malech has woven them into her exuberant debut. And she's stuck in too the x-rays of Zeus and the horns of Moses. SHORE ORDERED OCEAN is by turns witty and wonderstruck, fragile and fierce. Best of all, it announces an extraordinary talent to be watched and cherished."--J. D. McClatchy
"Inquiring, irreverent, reverent, enraptured, Dora Malech is that rare thing, the magician technician, and she has written a book in which a sudden segue in poetry takes place--from Hopkins to the present. The result is as breathtaking as a dove release. She knows every word in the world is a book, that every center sought and found is continually thrown off, that the muscular is fragile and vice-versa, yet none of her old soul knowledge is ponderous, predictable, or dull, for she remains in love with that essential playfulness which is the innocence of art. Here is Malech on the birth of a child: '...unfold all / those origami limbs to test / the inevitable debutante bawl.' This book is an astonishing debut, one that makes me feel our original, lost language has found its way home."--Mary Ruefle
Dora Malech is assistant professor in the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University. She is the author of three books of poetry. Her poems have appeared in the New Yorker, Poetry, the Best American Poetry, and numerous other publications. She lives in Baltimore.