If one has grown tired of the ambition, naked and bleating, on display in many recent first books of poetry, then one will welcome the concussive impact of Daniel Brenner’s The Stupefying Flashbulbs. These are short, occasion-stained lyrics, im- rather than compulsive, by turns insouciant and pregnable. Their pretensions are few, their presumptions, endearing. Thematic preoccupations include severity, inconclusiveness, and artistry. An evil cube makes repeat appearances. We all laugh last.
“The Stupefying Flashbulbs plays like symbolist fantasy, or mad monologue, or a diary of personal and farfetched dramas surfacing into ordinary life. New words demand invention to describe moments missing from language.”