Stranger in Town


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“It’s a pleasure to curl up with and be challenged by [Sigo’s poetry], driven to push one’s living further. In this new century, there is without doubt further territory for poetry to enter into, and Sigo embraces what is currently available and holds out an offering for the future.” –Patrick Dunagan

“In Stranger in Town, carefully placed exclamation points reveal the contents of a boyhood closet. A shock of capital letters pay homage to magicians Spicer, Wieners, and Rimbaud. An ambling line conjures Charles Olson done up in a little bit of drag. Themes of love, ecstasy, darkness, and light are wrestled away from sentimental tourists and into the arms of Cedar Sigo, resident genius of this rare, honest romance.” –Lisa Jarnot

“A reality made of poetry is all one could ask for, and here it is—created of skillful, elegant, lyric moments and lines. A door opens to a light, fluent room, where narratives of ‘urban mysticism’ are pursued. An ear moves from ‘professional music’ to the sound of melting snow. Poems that breathe with a forthright intimacy.” –Joanne Kyger

Stranger in Town is the much-anticipated second collection by San Francisco poet Cedar Sigo. Reflecting queer identity while eschewing clichéd aesthetics, Stranger in Town exudes an urban mysticism redolent of the San Francisco Renaissance—particularly John Weiners—as it collages the fragmented experience of contemporary culture. Among its highlights are the sublime long poem, “Music for Torching,” written in collaboration with Nathan Berlinguette and Will Yackulic, the translation of “Villon,” the biographical “Notes on Joan Crawford,” and prose meditations on poetry like “The Sun” and “The Emerald Tablet.”

Cedar Sigo was raised on the Suquamish Reservation in the Pacific Northwest and studied at The Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University. He is the editor of There You Are: Interviews, Journals, and Ephemera, on Joanne Kyger, and author of eight books and pamphlets of poetry, including RoyalsLanguage ArtsStranger in TownExpensive Magic, and two editions of Selected Writings. He was the Bagley-Wright lecturer for poetry in 2019 and is currently a mentor in the MFA program at The Institute of American Indian Arts. He lives in Lofall, Washington.

Additional information

Weight 0.24375 lbs
Dimensions 5.5 × 7.0 × 0.25 in