A Miscellany of Diverse Things
Surgery is not simply a medical procedure. Surgery can also be a dissection – when absent of an intent to treat and correct, the procedure becomes a hungry curiosity to examine and investigate. At its purest, a dissection intricately probes to behold the internal. Kobylarz practices this surgery of delicate incisions in his mélange. The essence of a miscellany of diverse things is not merely to catalog a wunderkammer of everyday objects, but moreover to hold up a double mirror: one to reveal the interior lives of objects, and another to reflect the depths of their creators and owners. Kobylarz’s poetry may initially elevate the mundane, but its deepest design is to ask what the human possession divulges about the human being. The quotidian isn’t only ecstatic; the quotidian is a book of revelations.
With nods to Flaubert’s Le Dictionnaire des Idées Recues and Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary, Kobylarz moves beyond a contained lexicon to a flung-open cabinet of curiosities. Encyclopedic in its compilation (more than 400 entries in this volume), miscellany avoids the static inventory list of a storehouse to embody the world as theatre. There are no museum exhibits, with objects isolated and preserved in glass cases. Instead, Kobylarz places spotlights on the minute, under-appreciated, and even unloved. He regards common objects as pearls within the world of an oyster, but never forgets their genesis of grit and irritant. In these poems, wonder and oddity are fused as sure as Bowie lived.
“With nods to Flaubert’s Le Dictionnaire des Idées Recues and Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary, Kobylarz moves beyond a contained lexicon to a flung-open cabinet of curiosities. Encyclopedic in its compilation (more than 400 entries in this volume), miscellany avoids the static inventory list of a storehouse to embody the world as theatre.” – Sabrina Barreto
“A Miscellany of Diverse Things surprises and delights readers no matter which page they light upon. Whether you light upon “matchbooks” or “island seas,” “paper airplanes” or “calling cards,” or any other page, you will find both familiarity and insight in the pithy prose poems that underscore the talent of writer Philip Kobylarz.” –Simone J. Billings, Ph.D., Director of Core Writing, Department of English Santa Clara University
“A master of whimsy and insight, a slinger of words, a nihilist, a believer, an archarchist – all wrapped into one! Kobylarz transforms the mundane into the extraordinary in this new book. Nothing is spared his critical eye as he picks apart the world arounds us, criticizing as well as justifying the existence of the routine, the prosaic, and even the profane. As a result, we are all better for it.” – Amazon (5-stars) Amazon
“Kobylarz is digging deep and striking veins of originality with each new book. He’s never boring. He’s always fun. He’s not a lightweight, though. He’s a significant American talent with true dazzle and depth. I recommend him for the jaded and curious.” – Amazon (5-stars) Amazon
“What is this curiosity? A compendium of thought? A philosophy of epistemology? An antidote to ennui and the blah and non-reality that is now? This is manic brilliance at its best and the odd thing: it’s all very funny. This is the type of book that you will return and return to to remember why we even have language in the first place.” – Amazon (5-stars) Amazon
“Upon completion of the first page, the reader will be intimately drawn in, Koby sets a stage and narrative like no other author in contemporary American literature. With this book, he continues in classic Kobylarz fashion, pushing the boundaries of American literature and, indeed, what is acceptable to put on a page.” – Amazon (5-stars) Amazon