If my esteem is not recommendation enough, here is her publisher Fence's blurb about the text:
To call Ariana Reines' poetry scatological doesn't even scratch the surface. "I COULD BE A DIAPER FOR THE DAY'S RESIDUALS," she writes, and, "She clasped the event to her and proceeded. Fucked her steaming/ eyehole and ended it." The Cow is a body in the way that texts are bodied—"Are you so intelligent your body doesn't have you in it."—but not in the way that allows the text to become desensitized, depersonalized, sterilized. Instead this text is filthy and fertilized, filling and emptying, filling and emptying, atrocious and politic with meaning. The Cow is a mother, a lover, and a murdered lump of meat, rendered in the strongest of languages. "I cannot count the altering that happens in the very large rooms that are the guts of her."
And two sentences of praise from a Known Individual (Ariana says she loves Richard Foreman but the one play of his I saw, Bad Boy Nietzsche, didn't move me particularly. Perhaps because I was a freshman in college at the time.):
“No doubt about it, this is strong and original work. Scary in the best possible way.”—Richard ForemanAnd this is from an online review to be found here (see the Dec. 21 entry):
[...something about another book released at the same time, to which the author occasionally compares The Cow...]I have it on good authority that the best price can be found here, at Barnes & Noble online.
Ariana Reines' The Cow is fiercer and wilder, embracing the persona of the eponymous ruminant, taking the consumption of (female) flesh literally. Brown flirts with obscenity, or more precisely our fascination with obscenity; Reines is viscerally, exuberantly obscene, yet somehow more in continuity with the hidden obscenity of the Real discovered by modernism and psychoanalysis—I think of Sianne Ngai's essay "Raw Matter: A Poetics of Disgust," but also of the primal scene of modernist poetry, The Waste Land, where the corpse planted in the speaker's garden turns out to be the mass grave of the (feminine?) nature that our civilization perches precariously upon: the cow with her vulnerable eyes and the cattle industry that produces and consumes her is the figure for this. The body is cracked open, violated, marked for death, taboo rather than sacred:
Earmark"Gemmed with grease!" I can't recall the last time I came across a text so scarifying, so disgust-ed/ing, that also seemed so verbally alive. Like Brown, Reines is also concerned with the position of poetry and herself as a speaker within poetry, though the sheer force of her negativity seems just possibly to contain its own seeds of regeneration. From the last page of "Transport," toward the end of the book:
She clasped the event to her and proceeded. Fucked her steaming eyehole and ended it. The cracked things was a doomed pidgin, it meant something.
Yesterday. A patience would be ideal. Make an art of it, sere notes winding their way through an air to have become the name of her going. Her name on the list, and some certain information they had.
After a time there is no more accuracy, after a time you can't get the note clean of what it might have been.
Under the skirt of Mother Ginger huddle little boys and girls. A holiday shit stain. His scholarliness justifies those flights
Of fancy you condemn in him. And the gummy hulls of words muzzle the chaw, a kind of cud that will not do. An umlaut could be a cousin's bone,
The poisoned nuance that started everything. It was from eating ourselves. It had to be
Someone else's sickness first, our silence, our good balance, our usefulness. There is something certain creatures long for. To be hacked up and macerated. That's having it come out and go into another body.
Eaten, gemmed with grease and herbs. Whose low language ruined our bowels. Whose lowing eventually meant nothing. We knew we were to become a ream of flesh. Another nothing.
It's the same old story and you have to learn to speak the CLAMATO language of the elders or they will fuck you too.Maybe Beckett is the more appropriate forebear to cite (the phrase "Go go" appears repeatedly, while its last words are "Go on. Go on"), and Stein if Stein were unable or unwilling to recuse herself as completely as she seems to from the matrix of heterosexual desire. Desire/disgust is the axis both of these books travel upon, Brown empahsizing the former and Reines emphasizing the latter. Above all I am impressed by their vulnerability, their angry nakedness.
You have to learn to speak the deciduous vocables of the true poets a beautiful whiteness.
The feet of white girls in flipflops. Fake hippie skirts from Forever 21. I hate the fop in me I want to eat a nipple of Venus because I am becoming a magnificent woman. Hurting culture want to bleed faggot
Leg wax high heel lipstick cuntface a marketing job designers wanting the best I want filthier but not to be homeless because I love myself too much bluebell cups in the rain a poetics of the music of the poolside therapy. Hate me. We are still thinking too much.
At this site, at this juncture, we are going to be we are becoming free.