Bernadette Mayer’s «Midwinter Day»: Dream of the («Extra»)Ordinary. 1. Imagining her self or, more specifically, how words have the power to give texture and. Midwinter Day [Bernadette Mayer] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Perhaps Bernadette Mayer’s greatest work, Midwinter Day was written. I had an idea to write a book that would prove the day like the dream has everything in it.” — Bernadette Mayer, Midwinter Day Today marks.

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Dec 28, Laura rated it really liked it. But again, her heart was in the dday place. By calling attention to this, Mayer questions the reality of this notion; does language become more fixed in adulthood or is that a misconception that is simply accepted and not questioned? And this is perhaps what makes Midwinter Day so simultaneously attractive and alienating: Is this book a poem, a memoir or a psychological experiment?

Jul 26, Mitch rated it it midainter amazing. She shot one roll for every day in the month of July, The paragraphs become expositions on both her immediate present and the memories of books read that this present stirs up, and the two seem to be disparate but in fact illustrate the circuitous nature of memory and intellect.

But I also found that I had a greater appreciation for Mayer’s overall project—of creating an epic about domesticity and routine. Reading it midwjnter, it seems to me the written-in-one-day thing is much less of a big deal than the actual poem.

Long and conversational, I found myself following list after lists with breathlessly. She returns as well to the rhyming seen in part one.

Light, time and death are intrinsically linked throughout the book, and Mayer returns to the connections between the three again and again.

Midwintef a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here And on it goes for another page and a half of unbroken prose, this careful and loving scrutiny of the messy but daay domestic space. This stanza with its iambic pentameter form is interrupted by a return of the narrator anxiously wondering how to say what she means.


Dec 10, StrangeBedfellows rated it did bernadetts like it. I often enjoyed her use of colour and how important you could tell her family were to her. The joy is what Mayer sees around her, and the need to get it in is almost a talismanic desire to ward off death with description. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: The text Studying Hunger can be read as a precursor to Midwinter Dayone in which Mayer toys with the idea of writing a text in a single day and works through the problems of recording unconscious states.

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Which makes me wonder whether great poetry only arises when your heart is in the wrong place Dickinson, Whitman, Hart Crane, Berrymanor if you have no heart at all Frost, Bukowski, Dugan. I know Mayer’s heart was in the right place — and I’ll probably receive a Christmas l A calm sentence like a story. The story of her dreams, the story of her day and then back to her night a day lived in a red-brick apartment building, in a small town.

Midwinter Day [Excerpt]

In this case, studying the hours of the day entails carefully noting and documenting the busy activity of a home filled with young bernadete who are doing nothing much in particular except playing, talking, fighting, reading, and eating.

As with earlier descriptions, this investigation as well is interrupted at times by the actions of the children: Part five begins with Mayer going into great detail about the actions and language of both her young daughters. The formal variety, fragmentation, and overall sense of flux and flow aim to convey the rhythm, the feel, the distinctive temporality of daily life with small children.

You miidwinter commenting using your WordPress. The two opposing poles become then the safety of the family unit locked in the house and the threat of moving out of that safety where death or betrayal lurks around the edges.

Mayer deliberately puts the reader in the position of questioning the function of words said aloud versus on the page.

Marie builds a farm from blocks, she puts two cows in a stall. But tantrums, grocery bills, daycare—even if I can identify with such things, it still feels somehow wrong to immortalize them in poetry Jun 18, Anne rated it it was amazing Shelves: Midwinter is presented as an epic poem, yet the closing thoughts by Mayer call it an essay.


In such moments, Mayer directly confronts the mixed feelings that are perhaps endemic to the role of the bohemian, avant-garde poet-mother. For Midwinter Day is long. The stories that middinter up her personal retinue include as well thoughts about her own writing: But I make the case that Mayer not only draws upon the resources of this lineage, but also offers a powerful retort, a bracing corrective to its failures and limitations.

ALL THE FEMINIST BOOKS: Midwinter Day by Bernadette Mayer – WEIRD SISTER

The melding of high and low art converges in this section through her descriptions and allusions to books. Mayer blends poetry and prose, experimental discoveries, various events, memories, dreams and conversations that when examined contain a remarkably complex retelling of this particular day. The financial default of the city of Cleveland, Inflation.

This true information is then regurgitated through the mind of the poet. This movement from formal to free verse puts both forms side by side; Mayer demonstrates her ability to work this experiment in both modes. Again Mayer reiterates the need to include all, referencing dzy idea that the dream has this quality and therefore she wishes to create a poem to mimic that inclusiveness.

A Feminist Genealogy of Langauge Writing. As the long midwinter night begins, love and language become the two beacons that the family has against the darkness.

I think the whole poem could be seen as a quest for what that mayrr is, and in the brenadette stanzas I think she shares the answer that she found. Mayer closes this section talking about love. At the same time I also knew a woman whose husband had seven guns. A struggle to read for bernavette who has a personal preference for short form poetry, however Mayer does something extraordinary by writing her day.