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Fear of Dreaming: The Selected Poems of Jim Carroll

Carroll, Jim. Fear of Dreaming: The Selected Poems of Jim Carroll. Nov. 1993. 292p. Penguin, paper, $12.50 (0-14-058695-4). Galley 811'.54 [BKL]

At 22, Carroll, already acclaimed for his Basketball Diaries, published his first collection of poems, Living at the Movies (1973), written in a brand of free verse at once hallucinatory and sharply focused. Touching, disturbing, and deeply personal, Carroll mines Catholic symbolism and mean-street and drug imagery with poignant intensity. In The Book of Nods (1985), his second collection, prose poems paying an acknowledged debt to Rimbaud depict urgent desperation in New York City and California. Penguin here combines Carroll's two earlier collections with some more recent poems and a vignette titled "Calvin's Charm" [sic]. Meanwhile, Carroll is also known for three rock n' roll albums.


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