Author: Ron Padgett
Publisher: Bamberger Books (1993)
Blood Work collects the best nonfiction prose works of celebrated poet and translator Ron Padgett. The sixteen pieces here range from the whimsical to the elegiac. Padgett considers the joys and problems of words, in translation and in his own writing, he trains his eyes on artists, including Man Ray, R.B. Kitaj, and George Schneeman, and on writers, from the Cubist Poets (who didn't exist) and Pierre Reverdy, to poets who have shared his adventures. His encounters with strangers in foreign countries are as vivid as portraits of friends close to home. From his inability to distinguish between the words for pineapple and grapefruit, to a diary of his thoughts as his father lies dying half a world away, Padgett offers us lessons in things, and in lives.