The Little Book of Fairy Tales & Love Poems
By Iris Berman
2007;23 pp; $8.00.
Poets Wear Prada,533 Bloomfield
Street, Hoboken, N.J. 07030.
By Bob Heman
2007; 12 pp; $6.25.
Poets Wear Prada (see adress above).
As Iris Berman goes riding with her lover off the edge of this earth, Bob Heman's Cone "pulls magic out of the rabbit and stuffs it into his hat" so readers will experience the same when they loosen their grip on logic to step into the marvelous worlds of these two poets.
Cone's empiracle investigations lead him "over the edge of the map" into a work as magic filled as Iris Berman's fairy tales. The red shoes lead her "away from/ The beautiful men... Across meadow and dell/ From Mountain to moutain..." refuse to "stop moving; her mermaid's tears became the salty ocean." Heman's Dr. Cone "melts in the rain...";"the hedonists...view him as a cactus"; when he visits "the city of numbers (he) slides inside a seven and disappears for hours."
A Cinderella "happily every after" story concludes not only Berman's title poem but another in which a couple "stoned out of (their) minds...(make) truth of the lies to reach it."
As if by magic, the fairy tale, rooted in ancient world, and the scientist's investigations lead to the same place. In "Cone Awakens" the doctor is stirred by a dream to by a rooster; the old one no longer crows and there've been new chicks for a long time. Told there are no more roosters to buy, he goes into the woods and sacrifices the fattest rabbit he sees to the goddess of the dawn. His old rooster is transformed as if by magic, and "soon little chicks are seen hurrying all around the yard."
Stylistically, these beautifully designed and produced chaplets bear their own distinctive signature. While Berman's poems utilize the short line, a minimum use of punctuation,and are driven by a moderately paced rhythm, sometimes characterized by a refrain, Herman's collection consist of twelve prose poems in as many pages on ivory parchment with a light green tint.