The Happiness Experiment

The Happiness Experiment

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Author: Lisa Fishman

Publisher: Ahsahta Press (2007)

Fishman's work marries Wordsworthian country life to modern complexity in lyrics celebrating love, joy, birth, and wonder.

"These lyrics carry the reader into a realm of immense, immediate, and surreal activity. The Happiness Experiment is a dream-version of what Whitman might have called a 'song of occupations.' Within Fishman's moving work of observation and recollection, the world of ordinary things seems itself to think, to mind itself; things gather, watch, prepare, betray, forget, explore, give names or keep silent. Throughout, the poet's mercurial intelligence is alert to the play of echo and the surprises of memory, in which the simplest verbs reveal their capacity to haunt. Her book's experiment is always linked to experience, its happiness to hap or chance."

–Kenneth Gross

"Lisa Fishman's third book is strange and compelling, a kind of pastoral poetry without place. Lightly but passionately undoing (the unmade, undreaming) as much as doing, Fishman's poems evoke figures of betweenness, floating 'between the reader and the book.'" 

–Nicholas Royle

"Lisa Fishman writes with an impeccable sense of cadence, of words as sounds too, of physical fact becoming thought and then recurring as poetry."

–Robert Creeley