Richard Siken is a poet, painter, filmmaker, and an editor at Spork Press. In her profile of Siken, Nell Casey wrote, “he effectively juxtaposes holy wishes with mundane images—making them both seem beautiful by some strange lyrical alchemy.”. Richard Siken is an American poet, painter, and filmmaker. He is the author of the collection Crush (Yale University Press, 2005), which won the Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition in 2004. 1 His second book of poems, War of the Foxes, was released from Copper Canyon Press in 2015.
Crush by Richard Siken is a phenomenal collection of poems that uses confessionalism to explore the speaker 's experiences with love and homosexuality. Siken uses strong imagery and diction to discuss the themes of abuse, love, and violence throughout the collection. For this essay I chose to analyze two of Siken’s poems “ A Primer for the Small Weird Loves” and “The torn-up road” . In both poems Siken is able to convey very powerful messages, and he uses his poetic ability to transform so much violence and abuse into beautiful art in the form of poetry.
“ A Primer for the Small Weird Loves” epitomizes the struggle of a coming of age gay man/boy. Siken uses a combination of strong diction,…show more content…
He talks about a dark-haired man in a rented bungalow and how he doesn’t really care about him. He describes their encounter as “ After everything that was going to happen has happened/ you ask only for the cab fare home”. His tone here is very nonchalant and that mirrors how he feels about this lover and how the lover feels about him. The next lover he talks about is a man on top of him that is teaching him to hate. The is a lot of violence between them and he uses a lot of strong words with negative connotations to describe the violence. He says “ Kissing degenerates to biting/ so you get a kidney punch, a little blood in your urine/ it isn’t over yet, it 's just begun.” His relationship with this lover is very violent and they are both only using each other for…show more content…
The poem is divided into numbered stanzas and each of the stanzas indicate a different event. Each of these events narrate a circumstance in which the speaker dealt with love, violence, sex , and the disadvantages that came with being homosexual. To the speaker he doesn’t deserve to be in love because he was gay, and the only love he knows is almost synonymous to violence and he clearly expresses this in each of the stanzas. The speaker says “ He hits you and he hits and he hits you/ desire driving his hands right into your body” He blames himself for the misfortune that came with him being in “love” he goes on to say “ you wanted to think of yourself as someone who did these kinds of things/ you wanted to be in
Richard Siken, Louise Gluck
Crush Richard Siken Quotes
Crush Richard Siken Poems
This collection about obsession and love is the 99th volume of the Yale Series of Younger Poets
Richard Siken’s Crush, selected as the 2004 winner of the Yale Younger Poets prize, is a powerful collection of poems driven by obsession and love. Siken writes with ferocity, and his reader hurtles unstoppably with him. His poetry is confessional, gay, savage, and charged with violent eroticism. In the world of American poetry, Siken’s voice is striking.
Richard Siken Poetry
'Siken writes about love, desire, violence, and eroticism with a cinematic brilliance and urgency that makes this one of the best books of contemporary poetry.'-Victoria Chang, Huffington Post'Vital, immediate, and cinematic in scope, [Siken's] verse offers sharply observed vignettes of longing, love, and pain.'-Library Journal (Best Poetry of 2005) 'Siken's debut collection derives its energy from the friction among bodies, selves, and lovers. . . . This book will excite patrons and be long remembered. Recommended for all collections.'-Library Journal 'Vital, immediate, and cinematic in scope, [Siken's] verse offers sharply observed vignettes of longing, love, and pain.'-Library Journal (Best Poetry of 2005) 'A powerful collection of poems . . . at once confessional, gay, savage, and charged with a violent eroticism.'-Forecast Finalist for the 2005 National Book Critics Circle Award in PoetryWinner of the 2005 Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry, sponsored by The Publishing Triangle'Crush is a wondrous, brilliant book. Richard Siken's poetry is daring in its construction, graceful yet startling in its beauty, and complicit with emotions and states of mind that would have remained unintelligible without him.'-Dennis Cooper