Preparing for Incarnations
Comb-bound: 106 pp.
This volume’s eighty chronologically arranged poems (comprising pieces from Cold Companionable Streams and the original Preparing for Incarnations) provide intense studies of small-town life from the perspective of Brodsky’s watchful poetic eye, perpetually ready to "take careful aim, speculate intuitively" on family, friends, neighbors, and employees. The verse seethes with images of an outsider floundering in the depths of the often-restrictive community around him and facing his own "private and totally asocial dying," in his daily struggle with the demanding roles of husband, new father, and plant manager.
Beads of rain pressed against my wind-screen by high velocity
In a dark compartment illumined from far below,
Not necessarily against, but without, my consent,