Famous Persons We Have Known
In this collection of poems we indeed meet the famous persons promised in the title: Lon Chaney, Jr. buying eggs and bananas at a Capistrano Beach supermarket; Elvis slipping out / with raccoons and owls to buy pink / Cadillacs for anyone that moved him; Marshal Dillon, his head split by a surfing mishap; even Geronimo, galloping back toward nature, ruined for love. But this books is about more than famous people. From the car and kokanee-chocked waters of Montana to an art gallery in Utah where the narrator doesn't meet a famous poet laureate, Robbins traces his own heritage and ours by connecting past and present, the dead and living. He does so with sly humor, a naturalist's precision, and a potent lyricism. The cumulative effect is that of a building rhythm that echoes our own trembling relationship to the land that somehow sustains us--because, as the narrator says in Bread, the collection's final poem, feeding / the hungry is what it's always all about.
Eastern Washington University Press
Robbins, R. (2000). Famous persons we have known. Eastern Washington University Press.