Winner of the 2001 Akron Poetry Prize
The Good Kiss is a collection of poems dealing loosely with the subjects of divorce, sexuality, and American culture from the 1950’s to today.The poems vary in tone from the fairly serious to the reflective and meditative, to the wryly comic. Perhaps it is fair to say that this range of tones exists within many of the individual poems, and is their defining characteristic. Poems like “What I Want,” and “The Good Kiss” are good examples of these quirky, rather unexpected tonal shifts and blendings.
The Good Kiss is full of delights and surprises-connections that will widen your eyes and sudden turns from the humorous into the serious that will throw you against the door. Such effects are the product of a poet who knows how to blend ingeniously the sentimental and the sarcastic, the smart and the innocent, the trivial and the desperately serious. In the house of contemporary poetry, this book is a welcome breath of fresh American air.
—Billy Collins, U.S. Poet Laureate