Gorgeous Chaos

Poetry by Jack Marshall

October 1, 2002 • 7 x 10 • 300 pages • 978-1-56689-130-1

A major collection that evocatively explores science and ecology, progress and compassion.

In this vital collection of new and selected work, Jack Marshall never lets readers forget that they are meat-on-the-bone, organic beings incomplete in nature, often rattled by the tricky fortune of possessing free will and consciousness. With voice steady and language sublime, Marshall imparts a studied view of being alive and the possibilities that abound before, during, and after our earthly tryst as psyche meeting flesh.

About the Author

Born in Brooklyn to Jewish parents who emigrated from Iraq and Syria, Jack Marshall now lives in California. He is the author of the memoir From Baghdad to Brooklyn and several poetry collections that have received the PEN Center USA Award, two Northern California Book Awards, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a nomination from the National Book Critics Circle.


“Jack Marshall’s work was always supple and mystical. His range has steadily expanded to include narrative and philosophical explorations. Taken together, these works are the record of a unique voice reverberating with lyric wisdom.” —Andrei Codrescu

“Jack Marshall brings heart to everything he writes, and the clear, quiet voice, a transparency of expression, like a flow of water or, better, like the fluid action of an amoeba engulfing and digesting the sharp edges of idea and image in each person.” —Poetry Flash

“The power of Jack Marshall’s poetry is disconcerting because of its unadorned nakedness. Every word is used. There is no fat on the lean bones of his words.” —Library Journal

“Marshall’s circuitous lines and meticulously selected words hit their target dead center while readers are still caught up in the atmosphere he so beautifully paints.” —Publishers Weekly