The book’s epigraph by John Ashbery, and epigraphing this review, is so lovely, and quite fittingly indicates the underlying concept to Tim Atkins’ 1000 SONNETS. The poems are sonnets viz the number of lines, but many of the “lines” are taken up by marks like slashes, a period or a series of periods or asterisks. Such marks stand in for, to paraphrase Ashbery, what’s been left out. The challenge then, at least to this reader who was quite taken by the The New Spirit’s excerpt, is that the poems—with all of its gaps—be as moving as Ashbery’s epigraph.
To cut to the chase, these poems are wonderful.