26 | A. F. Moritz | Art of Surgery


Art of Surgery is a moving chapbook of depth and of looking into the distant lights of the past. With Dantean and Vergilian invocations, A. F. Moritz wrote out of his experiences in the hospital where he underwent difficult heart surgery. A strong sadness envelops the reader in Moritz’s depictions of life, death and the struggle to find meaning and love within a chaotic world without apparent mercy.

These depictions bring to the surface the fact that we, as a society and culture, have lost the ability to find beauty as meaningful connection. And thus it comes with the life journey that we often don’t know our names and that we are lost. Memory is the ephemeral link to our experiences; perhaps involving trickery and illusion. A. F. Moritz allows us to journey deeply into an internal “imagining” where living may mean having to step away from the past. The poems resonate with their own beauty and rhythmic musicality, ultimately bringing us closer to life’s potential.

“Even though you are the fount of every name,

your name we won’t know. We scarcely know

the beauty of our names

pointing to yours where it sits among them silent

as though lost…”

Author’s Bio

A. F. Moritz  is the author of more than 15 books of poetry; he has received the Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, the Relit Award (for Night Street Repairs , named the best book of poetry published in Canada in 2005), an Ingram Merrill Fellowship, and a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation. He is the sixth Poet Laureate of Toronto.



Table of contents

The Fount of Every Name
The History of Grief
The Wanderer
Love, Thou Art Absolute Sole Lord
Art of Surgery
Descent to the Dead
The Pond in the Woods
Vergil, Legend
The Year

23 pp. total

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