Friday, February 7, 2014

Chicago poet Tony Trigilio documents his life, DARK SHADOWS

THE COMPLETE DARK SHADOWS (OF MY CHILDHOOD) is a book-length poem (100 pages!) by Tony Trigilio about everybody's favorite gothic soap opera, DARK SHADOWS. The concept behind the book is grand: Billed as a multi-part experimental biography, the first book in the series spans the first 183 episodes of DARK SHADOWS to feature Barnabas Collins. Each episode gets a single line of text. The author is planning a later volume/appendix to cover the earliest episodes.

I haven't yet read the book yet, but it's just gone to the top of my Kindle queue. Don't expect a review, though. At least, not from me. My experience with poetry is limited almost exclusively to song lyrics written by rock stars with crippling substance abuse problems, so my opinion on the book won't have much depth.("Not enough guitar solos!" says The Collinsport Historical Society.)

"My hope is that the leaps between the real and the fictional in the book will blur the boundaries between my life and the lives of the characters in Dark Shadows, and I’m glad to hear how much this comes out in the poem," Trigilio told ZYZZYVA. "I watched the show at such a young age that I personalized everything in it. The bite marks on Maggie’s neck were my own. Victoria Winters’s exposed neck was my own. And when I got to the plotline where Barnabas stalks Little David, I could see, of course, where I got hooked as a child."

THE COMPLETE DARK SHADOWS (OF MY CHILDHOOD) is available on Amazon. If you read it, I'd love to hear your thoughts about the concept and its execution.

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