The Marie Alexander Series is dedicated to promoting the appreciation and enjoyment of prose poetry.

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Traffic: New and Selected Prose Poems

by Jack Anderson

In these 37 prose-poems, ranging in density from short lists to treatises on poetics and philosophy, Anderson begins with a deceptively simple voice that breaks into dark hilarity: "No, you shall not be hurt. You may depart at once. All that is required is that you wear this placard reading, I am an ugly thing because I am superfluous."

About the Author

Jack Anderson, a poet and dance writer, is the author of ten books of poetry and seven books of dance history and criticism. He was co-editor (with George Dorris) of Dance Chronicle, a journal of dance history from 1977 to 2007, writes on dance for the New York Times and for www.nytheatre-wire.com, and is New York correspondent for The Dancing Times of London. His most recent dance book is Art Without Boundaries: The World of Modern Dance, an international history of modern dance, and others include Choreography Observed, Ballet and Modern Dance: A Concise History, The American Dance Festival, and The Nutcracker. He has taught dance history and criticism at the University of Adelaide (Australia), the North Carolina School of the Arts, the University of Minnesota, the College of St. Catherine (St. Paul, Minnesota), the New School for Social Research, Herbert L. Lehman College (New York City), and the American Dance Festival. In 2011 he was named to the Brackett Distinguished Visiting Artist Chair at the University of Oklahoma. He has also served on the dance panel of the National Endowment for the Arts.

His volumes of poetry include The Hurricane Lamp, The Invention of New Jersey, Toward the Liberation of the Left Hand, City Joys, The Dust Dancers, The Clouds of That Country, Selected Poems, Field Trips on the Rapid Transit, Traffic, and most recently Getting Lost in a City Like This (Hanging Loose, 2009). His poems have also appeared in many anthologies and one of his prose poems provided the title for the anthology The Party Train. He has been a visiting writer at the University of Kansas and the College of DuPage in Illinois and has also received both a National Endowment for the Arts creative writing fellowship and a National Endowment literary award.

Visit the author's Poets & Writer profile.



… a true original. His pictures of the life we lead are satiric gems, yet so consummate an artist is he that the reader can do nothing but laugh uproariously and demand ‘More, more…,’
— Morton Marcus
Jack Anderson is one of our great tightrope dancers. His balance is exquisite, even when he’s holding a chair, an umbrella, and an elephant … sometimes teaching high hiliarity, sometimes utmost seriousness.
— Robert Hershon

Release DateOctober 1998




Dimensions6 x 0.3 x 9 inches

Your Sun, Manny

Your Sun, Manny