Dancing in Odessa by Ilya Kaminsky

Issue #99
Spring 2006

Jane Hirshfield recommends
Dancing in Odessa, poems by Ilya Kaminsky: ”
Dancing in Odessa is not newly published, but it is new to me, and deserves to be recommended. This is an intricate, muscular, startlingly powerful collection, one that amazes by image and statement, by its shaped whole, and by the sheer scope of its poetic observation. Kaminsky is truly a descendant of Odysseus, after whom his birth city was named, and his poems reflect both Odyssean wanderings and the liberation of mind that opens the way to craft. Inventiveness of language, the investigative passion, praises, lamentation, and a proper sense of the ridiculous are omnipresent. Kaminsky’s poems are wholly local yet unprovincial, intimate yet free of ego. This first full-length book is a breathtaking debut.” (Tupelo)