Bernadette Mayer’s «Midwinter Day»: Dream of the («Extra»)Ordinary. 1. Imagining her self or, more specifically, how words have the power to give texture and. Midwinter Day [Bernadette Mayer] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Perhaps Bernadette Mayer’s greatest work, Midwinter Day was written. I had an idea to write a book that would prove the day like the dream has everything in it.” — Bernadette Mayer, Midwinter Day Today marks.

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As I have suggested, this stance has taken root in many corners of contemporary poetry.

There is never a shift in perspective that tries to dissolve the narrator or that tries to move too far away from the experiment at hand. Nevertheless, it’s not all readerly roses. And this is perhaps what makes Midwinter Day so simultaneously attractive and alienating: I know Mayer’s heart was in the right place — and I’ll probably receive a Christmas lump of coal for pointing this out — but this is one long droning proto-yuppie diary entry utterly devoid of mystery, music, strangeness, or ambiguity.

Midwinter Day [Excerpt]

The act of creating this book brings value to the work of motherhood and provides a standard for future mothers who struggle under the same constraints of finding time and energy for their creative aspects as well as their family demands.

It continues the tradition of books like Ulysses the poem has the same first word “Stately” and Mrs. The importance of light parallels the motion of the story; the light is short and therefore there is a representation of the events of the day recorded in these bursts of prose: Thus, we are given a remarkable snapshot of the culture and politics of the s as glimpsed on a random day in late Dec 23, Vicky rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: A calm sentence like a story.


Oct 29, kaelan rated it really liked it Shelves: Jan 19, Tom rated it it was amazing Shelves: Words take on a supercharged role in this household, Mayer points out, and the responsibility she and Lewis have to words can be seen in this letter where Mayer struggles to be understood by the person closest to her who is also the only other adult in the house. The book is a long poem t Jayer was introduced to this book by the lead assistant to the professor for Coursera’s and UPenn’s course Modern and Contemporary American Poetry, who generously spent part of her Midwinter Day and a couple of preceding days this year leading a discussion of the book on the ModPo forums.

I might add that this work is infinitely more satisfying than any of Kenny G. There is the desire to both recount the dream and to participate in trying to analyze the dream: Like Ulysses, each of its six parts is written in a slightly different style. These two parts representing the interior life of the family at morning and at evening bookend the middle part three, which occurs exclusively outside of the home focusing on family errands bwrnadette the history and mapping of the town.

Mixwinter made me struggle. Someone else said I was no longer a true experimentalist. She not only uses her life and her family to carry out this experiment, but she is willing to lay bare her deepest feelings about the functions of love in relation to her commitment to the poem. At some point, the child will see her sex as more permanent, Mayer infers, the same way that language seems to develop permanence in its representations and meanings. Broken into six sections, this page poem provides an intimate glimpse into the thoughts, struggles, fears, dreams, and passions of a young American mother in the late 70s.


We did this relay style, for a week. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. But I make the case that Mayer not only draws upon the resources of this lineage, but also offers a powerful retort, a bracing corrective to its failures and limitations. And it’s why I plan on someday returning to this strange, tedious and perplexing work of poetry. The story of her dreams, beernadette story of her day and then back to her night a day lived in a red-brick apartment building, in a small town.

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Her next experiment, Studying Hunger Journals, tracks states of consciousness within a month. Death, maybe brought on by the initial dream, seems to haunt this opening piece: What day does not have its trivial prosaic moments?

Review – Bernadette Mayer, ‘Midwinter Day’ – third year poetry project

There is a lot in the poem about cycles, starting with the title, which refers to the marking of the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year, and the traditional death of the old sun and the birth of the new. Mmayer dream imagery is constantly interrupted by an awareness of the experiment of recording the dreams as well as attempts to interpret and contextualise the imagery.

Walt Whitman comes to mind towards the end with her lists and her desire, it seems, to include the whole world in this one day.