Recent Books

Poetry
"There is no knack for grief," writes Wheeler (Assorted Poems), but her far-reaching experimentation suggests that—through language—she's seeking one. Three wild sequences struggling with loss comprise this volume: In "The Maud Poems," a daughter attempts to make sense of a mother's language rife with idioms and clichés by collaging stanzas of the poet's own lyric voice ("In the sepulcher where the mother lay/ at last some sleep to gain,/ Hannah helped me carve the oak/ into granite with her cane") between nagging bursts ("Don't come in here all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed expecting us to give you more"). The second sequence, "The Devil—or—The Introjects" remixes this vernacular with narrative in dense—sometimes opaque—units. The last is also the most stirring sequence: "The Split" recounts disaster that "doubles at the slightest slight" through slippery lines that reveal masterful dexterity without compromising meaning. "Such is the state of our poetry caught in my throat on its way/ to my mouth, why not do everything// but of course we do nothing" she writes. Wheeler's ambitious new book comes closer to doing everything—much closer—and we are left awed at Wheeler's audacity. (Oct.) Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Susan Wheeler's narrative glamour finds occasions in unlikely places: hardware stores, Herodotus, Hollywood Squares, Flemish paintings, green stamps, and echoes of archaic and cyber speech. What at first seems cacophonous comes in the end to seem invested with a mournful dignity: that of 'the jangling discourse of our nation.' Ledger is a treasure map for those willing to understand the journey." - John Ashbery
A "project" book of poetry, interspersing Susan Wheeler's informal collages with poems
Susan Wheeler's second collection of poetry, with an afterword by U.S. poet laureate Robert Hass.
Selected Poems
Assorted Poems is a generous selection from the first four books by one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary poetry. In Bag o’ Diamonds (1993), Smokes (1998), Source Codes (2001), and Ledger (2005), Susan Wheeler has established herself as a poet of rare gifts. Her work is allusive and searching, sweeping over time and place, from the art of the northern Renaissance to corporate logos, observing and exploring everything with characteristic precision and intelligence. The poems are both rigorous and free, taking on our culture, its beauties and cruelties, its relationship to the past and its uncertain future. Assorted Poems is a vibrantly thoughtful and entertaining book, a mustread from a poet whom Harold Bloom has called “an exuberant, subtle, endlessly inventive original.”
Novel
Record Palace is an astonishment. Susan Wheeler's deft touch and flawless ear have produced an irresistable work, both fresh and sage. - Toni Morrison

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I was cleaning up stuff in my parent's house and found a recent-ish New Yorker June 27, 2011 and flipped through and found your poem "From "The Split" . I knew Lorraine. She lived down the road from my family. I'm just saying bye to my Dad, (mom a long time ago), Bye aunt and uncle across the street. Bye Moore Road.
Pkirshner@gmail.com

El Leon Liteary Arts (www.elleonlitearyarts.org) is bringing out the late Norma Farber's Year of Reversible Loss, prepublication praise from Robert Pinsky and Terese Svoboda, among others. I'd like to send you a copy.
Thomas Farber, Publisher,
tfar@berkeley.edu

Susan Wheeler,
Thank you for visiting Nebraska Wesleyan University, where I currently attend. Learning about great works in poetry and having the opportunity to meet the author is an experience that I will not soon forget.

I wondering if you where a girl that was popular or a person that was independent? why did you want to be a poet? by the way you poems are amazing. jessica101322@hotmail.com

I have no idea what this is but it popped up as I wss googling like crazy to try and find a way to contact Susan Wheeler to request and interview. I publishing editor of Oak Bend Review. www.oakbendreview.com Recent interviews have included: Gregory Orr Christian Wiman Timothy Green and forthcoming are Jack Myers and Katha Pollitt. Please please contact me at sandeelyles@yahoo.com if you are the poet Susan Wheeler and see this. I admire your work,

Hi, I'm Shira. I'm in a class with Rebecca Reilly. She say, "read this." I read this but there is no this, only that. Where is this?

Dear Susan, James Reiss suggested I contact you and this seems to be the only way to find you easily. I write a public radio "comic strip" called 11 Central Ave which airs around the country during Morning Edition. Both Rick Moody and James Reiss have written episodes for my "writers write 11 Central Ave" series and I wondered if you might be interested in writing an episode. (they're three minutes long) You can contact me at sarlenshep@comcast.net. Thanks...Sue Shepherd

Hi Susan. Couldnt find your email. But just wanted to remind that youre all set to call into our studio at WIDR 89.1FM this Wed (Apr 26) at 5:15pm EST (Michigan time) for a live call-in on-air phone interview. Will look forward to speaking with you. More info (and our studio phone # listed on our www.widr.org web site). Ron Riekki, ronriekki@hotmail.com