Viridian is Paul Hoover's sixth collection of poetry and the first since his book-length work The Novel: A Poem was published in 1990. While The Novel: A Poem dealt with the dilemma of postmodern authorship, the poems in Viridian are conceptual pieces varied in style and subject matter. The poems in the first of three sections comment on the world through language and simultaneously explore how subject matter, from baseball to death to highway signs, is transformed by language. The middle section consists of longer poems in which meaning emerges through a filter of language. In the final and most lyrical section, several poems are based on Hoover's screenplay for Joseph Ramirez's 1994 independent film, Viridian. Many of these poems were used as voice-overs for the film's main character, a single mother searching for permanence. Their language is incantatory, as if poetry could fix a place for her in the world.
Literature-Fiction, Poetry, American,