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Chaos Is the New Calm - BOA Editions, Ltd.

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Chaos Is the New Calm

By: Wyn Cooper

Availability: In Stock

Regular price $16.00

About This Title

Chaos is the New Calm is a book of sonnets and sonnet like poems, some rhymed, some  not. Starting with the idea of the sonnet as a fourteen line lyric poem, this book plays with the form, putting rhymes in unusual places, inventing new stanza forms, and addressing an unusually broad variety of subject matter. The poems range from travelogue to inner monologue, from surveys of the news, to social commentary, to solitary musing. Above all, the language of the poems is alive with sound and rhythm, with emotions that are best expressed by extremes of diction, syntax and style, without sacrificing sense. Each poem creates a lyric insight into the world.

"A wise practitioner of the horizontal lyric—a lyric poem that does not rise, but rather spreads over surfaces, coloring them with its particular tincture of consciousness—Wyn Cooper explores an overlooked territory that lies between the crafty irony of Frank O'Hara and the more unalloyed sentiments of contemporary popular culture, discovering unexpected equivalencies and startling imbalances. His speaker's nonchalance—a new version of negative capability—becomes increasingly challenging as the book unfolds a universe in which, on the one hand, the ideal would be 'to be insane again/ to dance the loud night away,/ the crowd on X, a single sway,' and on the other, reality demands that you 'Speak now or forever/ hold your hat in your hand.'"     

                                                                                                                  —T.R. Hummer  

“In his new book, Wyn Cooper offers plain-spoken poems remarkable for their subtle echoes and balance of cultural sophistication and bare, formal construction. In these poems, the human condition is an infernal condition where the restlessness of the spirit and the intellect is only cooled by a steady, meditative gaze at our lives, that is then offered up as a distinctive sound that sings our beauty.”

                                                                                                              —Major Jackson

Chaos Is the New Calm

Chaos is the new calm

violence the new balm

to be spread on lips

unused to a kiss.


Left is the new right

as I brace for a fight

with a man who stands

on his remaining hand.


Fetid harbor harbor me

until someone is free

to drive me away

from what happened today.


Don’t strand me standing here.

If you leave, leave beer.  


© BOA Editions, Ltd 2010

Available editions:



ISBN: 978-1-934414-34-7

Price: $16.00

Publishing Date: May 2010