"I am a house whose doors have been thrown open."
As a young reader, I learned the cliche "You can't judge a book by its cover."
But the design of 10 Tongues challenges that notion. The book has a deep orange background, with the number" 10" wrapped around the top quarter of the cover, back to front, with a tongue hanging from the bottom of the zero. The title is set in 10-point type at the base of that tongue.
The cover is a subtly seductive promise to reveal something about the poet who has moved past the notion of his own individual suffering or ecstasy. Harris is a courageous guide with these 33 poems, which reveal erotic, innocent and shadowed places, with objectivity and a style filled with accessible images and distinct musical patterns.
The poems in the first section are a series of family portraits and memories preserved by an inquisitive child, which form the foundation of the book. The rest of Harris' poems are clearly more informed by existentialism.
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|Author:||Burke, Linda Joy|
|Publication:||Black Issues Book Review|
|Article Type:||Book Review|
|Date:||Jan 1, 2003|
|Previous Article:||When words become flesh: an Anthology of New Generation Poetry.|
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