April 10, 2009

Review by Mary Meriam

by Julia Vinograd

Zeitgeist Press
1630 University Avenue #34
Berkeley, CA 94703
ISBN 0-929730-84-x
2008, 70 pp., $8.95

The cover of Julia Vinograd’s new book of poems, America Is Hiding Under My Bed, is graced by a lively, loving portrait of Julia, painted by her sister, Debbie Vinograd. Both Vinograds are portrait artists: Julia paints with words; Debbie is a poet with paint.

Adrienne Rich could have been describing the Vinograd sisters when she wrote, “The revolutionary poet loves people, rivers, other creatures, stones, trees inseparably from art, is not ashamed of any of these loves, and for them conjures a language that is public, intimate, inviting, terrifying, and beloved.”

The book’s eponymous poem is a public, intimate, inviting, terrifying, and beloved portrait of America as a felon, fugitive, and addict. In contrast to a poem about hiding is this poem about being invisible in plain sight:

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