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Beast is a Wolf

This first published volume shows Wallenstein to be a finely disciplined versifier. The poems are tightly controlled and skillfully honed to six or seven syllables (sometimes more or less) to the line. In the typical poem there are up to a couple of dozen lines of no more than 100 words all told. Wallenstein therefore fits into the company of Reg Saner, David McKain, and most notably Linda Pastan among his contemporaries. His diction, which is resolutely simple and straightforward, is given a sudden twist by unexpectedly elusive phrases or shifts in tone, manifesting clearly the poet’s vaguely threatening; what little love there is gives no comfort or assurance. In sum, the context of the poems is recognizably contemporary and urban. A promising first volume, recommended for collections of present-day poets.

Brockport, NY, BOA Editions, 1977
Reviewed by 

Beast is a Wolf with Brown Fire

runs across meadows

and bounds up into 

old farms, now stubbly

and overgrown.

she runs through brush

she rests among the evergreen

and the poplar.

her eyes are pinned to the light

flickering through the leaves.

she pants white mist, she lounges,

she changes sex in the shadows

and emerges in red fire.


the beast is a wolf  and

she goes to you

she’s found you out,

my love.

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