Poetry News

If You Want the Whole Religious Experience, Read Donald Dunbar's Reviews of His Own Book

By Harriet Staff


Keep your eyes on the unique reviewing acts of Donald Dunbar, whose book Eyelid Lick was published by Fence Books in November. In a non-anonymous review at Alibris, Dunbar himself writes his book's first review. "I went into massive debt for Eyelid Lick ..." goes the headline. Part of the rest:

...and I couldn't smile bigger.

I keep buying copies of Eyelid Lick and messing them up and buying more copies and messing them up and buying other books and writing "EYELID LICK" on them and messing them up. In a sense, this makes me a really high-level capitalist, and in another sense it makes me, you know, kind of a book pervert.

For instance, I recently bought your favorite book and left it for dead. I'm sorry, but there's no chance it survived. It was wounded, and it was cold out, and night was coming. As I walked away, I chanced to look up. The last traces of orange were draining from a cloud in a way that seemed to read, "Facial Lifestyle," which, as anyone knows, is an N+12 version of "Eyelid Lick". My guilt left me and I knew that my cruelty would not be punished, that this is the law of nature.

I'd recommend this item to a friend, unless I knew that my so-called friend would use it against me.

I'd recommend this item to many world leaders, but especially leaders-for-life.

I'd recommend this item to gardeners, cooks, and scullery maids.

I would not recommend this item to someone doing a Leaving Las Vegas-kinda suicide mission, as it might fall in love with them, and make them second-guess their decision. . . .

There's more--check out Dunbar's review at the Powell's Books site:

Donald Dunbar, January 5, 2013 (view all comments by Donald Dunbar)

I like this book a lot, but sometimes it wakes me up--I'm not sure it intends to, but I can hear its breathing (maybe its breathing changes? maybe it's just a natural thing?) and my unconscious brain knows that maybe that's not how breathing should sound, or that there's an intent in the breath. I'm never scared waking up like this, at least moreso than I'm scared waking up every morning--like, which-world-is-this kind of scared, -and-will-it-eat-me--and I don't think this book wants to eat me, although it is very good and might be capable of getting through one of my legs before I could stop it. Perhaps it's better not to fall asleep with it on your throat.

I recommend this book for people who are looking for a little more from their books. Sure, you could read some other book and possibly have a nice time, like British people do on sunny days, but if you want the whole religious experience*, I'm not sure you can do better.

Also, we all want love. You will find some here.

*you know the religion I am talking about

Nice work, Donald, on all fronts!

Originally Published: January 14th, 2013