The Graffiti of Pompeii is series of poems inspired by actual graffiti unearthed from the ancient city of Pompeii. Just like the voices of the graffiti writers, the poems assume different tones, moods, and perspectives. What was the most fascinating both for a writer and the reader connecting the words across the centuries, was how much alike we are, and how time does little to alter our basic humanity.
"Ross’s language “swallow[s] / us in like dizzied bees,” at times intoxicatingly, synaesthetically lyrical, at times winkingly devolving into mathematical tabulations, crosswords, and other wordplay in an exhilarating quest to utter life’s unutterable multiplicity. Graffiti is, when you get down to it, a reaching toward immortality, an effort to take sanctuary in the permanence of the written word. In these erudite, character-rich linked lyrics, Ross brings a novelist’s keen powers of psychological penetration to bear, resurrecting the doomed dwellers of Pompeii, prostitutes and confirmed bachelors, slaves and slave-owners, arguing that just as these motley people once attracted Vesuvius’s dark attentions, they now merit ours: their graffiti shows them to have been bawdy, boastful, and blindly desirous, cruelly hedonistic and savagely carefree, but they were also human in the same timeless ways we are, and they were once—albeit briefly—“enviably alive.” - Jenna Le, author of A History of the Cetacean American Diaspora
Paperback: 96 pages
Publishing date: December 6, 2018
Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.2 x 9 inches
Price: $19.60 (paperback) $7.99 (e-book)
Laura Sobbot Ross teaches English to ESOL students at Lake Technical College in central Florida, and has worked as a writing coach for Lake County Schools. Her writings appeared in Blackbird, Meridian, The Florida Review, Calyx, Natural Bridge, and many others. She was named as a finalist for the Art & Letters Poetry Prize 2016, and won the Southern Humanities Auburn Witness Poetry Prize 2017. Laura has been nominated four times for a Pushcart Prize. Her poetry chapbooks are A Tiny Hunger, and My Mississippi.