Featured on Washington Independent Review Of Books, Grace Cavalieri reviewed Doritt Carroll’s GLTTL STP while showcasing Carroll’s poems.
Check out Cavalieri’s review below:
The title stands for glottal stop, a choking sound produced in the throat; and the words’ conversion to a book title without vowels is just one sample of a woman who is a risk taker and a safety net all it once. Dorrit Carroll is sublime. What does she do and how does she do it? First, we start with the quality of her mind – the poem cannot be any better than the person who presses it into being. Her mind is like a giant constellation from which tiny zodiacs occur perfectly formed.
From the poem father:
… I say that I can’t miss you/because you are inside me/is it your lips/or mine/that press together/as if they are sealing off/an envelope of disappointment//your or my finicky way/of straightening a desk/pinching each paperclip/between thumb and forefinger/as if it’s a dead fly//and whose measuring eyes/appraise me/from the mirror//composed/perhaps/to a fault
Or look at this poem titled p.m.:
the night you/ gurgled yourself dead/your breaths sounded like/bubbles blown through a stroll//as if the milk of you were being drunk /by a greedy child somewhere/with no manners// and then at last the straw hit/the bottom of the glass/because the bubble stopped//and you/glass that you were/looked no different/empty/than you had/full
Sometimes she just snapshots a scene:
the Christmas trees
lie on their sides
on the curb
as if they’d been shot
just steps from their
as if they’d almost
Doritt Carroll’s poetry is concrete and allegorical at once. Poetry never repeats itself and yet poems are made of the same old words we all use. Caroll’s impulses are her ideas. She hones each thought diligently until it acts precisely the way she chooses. Anyone can have a flash/an inspiration, but the implementation tells all. These are carefully made poems from templates that have antecedents in our craft, but that are particularly targeted on a page that could belong to no one else. Who knows what Carroll is made of and she, herself, wonders here:
is a complicated instrument
four adjoining chambers
God knows what
To check out more of Cavalieri’s reviews, go here.