Skip to navigation.

The Sore Throat
by Aaron Kunin

add to cart

The poems of The Sore Throat, his second collection, come out of self-imposed semiotic limitation, yet manifest a fully inhabited psychological environment. Within a limited vocabulary, Kunin finds hymn, epigram, ode, elegy, ballad, conversation, invective, confession, epitaph, inability, protest, love poem (praise, valentine, aubade, seduction, defense of inconstancy), riddle, cosmogony, theodicy, vanity, and misplaced concreteness. Combining formal procedure with a kind of automatic writing, The Sore Throat produces poems of unlikely, and heightened, sensitivity to nuances of feeling.

"Aaron Kunin, author of the novel The Mandarin, straddles that literary fence of poet/fiction-writer (or fiction-writer/poet, depending on your view). A master of both lyrical balance and fine, angst-ridden storytelling, he serves up this collection with a defiant bent that shines through a great deal of raw self-awareness. In the collection, Kunin explains that he’s been “compulsively transcribing everything I say, hear, read or think” over the past few years, which may explain why his personal vocabulary plays out so well on the page and when read aloud. In mapping out his take on Ezra Pound’s “Hugh Selwyn Mauberley,” his awareness of his own linguistic tics proves especially handy." - Paste Magazine