Rising at 5 A.M.

Rising at 5am front cover



The rich and rewarding poems in Rising at 5:00 A.M., by Marc Elihu Hofstadter, are at once autobiographical and philosophical. Looking at his life with wisdom, wit, and honesty, Hofstadter traces the development of his identity as a poet, a Jew, and a gay man who has also loved women. He is a sensual poet who relishes the myriad scents, tastes, touches, sounds, and sights that the world offers him. In this he is reminiscent of Whitman, with whom he imagines sharing a stroll through New York: “Throw your arms around my shoulder,/let us mingle kiss and laugh/and stroll up Broadway together,/voices extolling fruit cart and deli,/boom box and pigeon.” — Lucille Lang Day, author of The Curvature of Blue

This book is a life intersecting with many lives. Poems that read like narratives traverse years of suffering, learning and delight. They open doors to Provincetown, summer camp, prep school, the mental ward, Russian novels. With unerring rhythm and in countless ways Marc Hofstadter sings his passion to the reader's heart. —Neal Oxenhandler, author of Rimbaud: The Cost of Genius

Marc Hofstadter's poems rise from the essential lyrical situation—a poet alone with his sensations and his memories, observing and recording what exists in his private world. The sum of the poems is a life in all its particularities, seen small-scale and up-close, and told without reticence. In this he is like Cavafy, another poet who was fortunate in his cities and at ease with his desires. — Samuel Hynes, author of The Auden Generation

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