Both intensely personal and deeply rooted in recognizable events of personal, familial or national significance, "The Afterlife of Objects" is a kind of dreamed autobiography. With poise and skill, Dan Chiasson divulges the enigmas of the mind of not just one individual but of an entire social world through a beautifully constructed poetic voice that issues from a kind of mythic childhood of our collective, tortured humanity. This sophisticated debut collection offers, deceptively simple poems that evoke highly complex states of mind with a voice that has long been listening to the discordant music of contemporary life.
Dan Chiasson is assistant professor of English at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. His poems have appeared in magazines such as Paris Review, Ploughshares, Slate, Threepenny Review, and Partisan Review. He was named "Debut Poet" by the New Yorker in 2001.