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  • Alternative Medicine

    Author(s): Rafael Campo
    Published: 2013
    Pages: 88
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  • “In a style both precise and emotional, playful and earnest, Campo delivers a most extraordinary message: that in writing, in seeing, in remembering, and in being, we embody, simultaneously, the ache as well as the cure.” — Briana Shemroske, Booklist

    “I’ve rarely heard someone describe his or her doctor as “accessible.’ Rafael Campo’s poetry has always been unapologetically so, but his formal decorum (from décor: ‘beauty, grace’) makes for poems that are both objects of deep contemplation and acts of open-hearted expression.  In a word, art.” — Steven Cramer, The Arnold T. Gold Foundation blog

    Reviews

  • “In a style both precise and emotional, playful and earnest, Campo delivers a most extraordinary message: that in writing, in seeing, in remembering, and in being, we embody, simultaneously, the ache as well as the cure.” — Briana Shemroske, Booklist

    “I’ve rarely heard someone describe his or her doctor as “accessible.’ Rafael Campo’s poetry has always been unapologetically so, but his formal decorum (from décor: ‘beauty, grace’) makes for poems that are both objects of deep contemplation and acts of open-hearted expression.  In a word, art.” — Steven Cramer, The Arnold T. Gold Foundation blog

  • "Alternative Medicine (a wonderful euphemism for poetry) is an extraordinarily powerful and moving book—especially its central poems about doctoring, about the sadness and helplessness of being a doctor. Only someone who has actually lived these poems could have written them. Rafael Campo is that rare poet. This book makes art out of the pain and blood of experience." — Lloyd Schwartz, poet and Frederick S. Troy Professor of English, University of Massachusetts, Boston

    "Rafael Campo is an extraordinarily skillful poet: his technique manifests itself in the range of forms he so brilliantly masters. But he is also a poet of gravity and poignant observation. Unlike so many people writing today, he has subjects, passions, and themes that are profoundly important." — Sandra M. Gilbert, poet and Distinguished Professor of English Emerita, University of California, Davis

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  • Description

    In his sixth collection of poetry, the celebrated poet-physician Rafael Campo examines the primal relationship between language, empathy, and healing. As masterfully crafted as they are viscerally powerful, these poems propose voice itself as a kind of therapeutic medium. For all that most ails us, Alternative Medicine offers the balm of song and the salve of the imagination: from the wounds of our stubborn differences of identity, to the pain of alienation in a world of unfeeling technologies, to the shame of the persistent injustices in our society, Campo's poetry displays a deep understanding of hurt as the possibility for healing. Demonstrating an abiding faith in our survival, this stunning, heartfelt book ultimately embraces the great diversity of our ways of knowing and dreaming, of needing and loving, and of living and dying.

    About The Author(s)

    Rafael Campo teaches and practices general internal medicine at Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. He is also on the faculty of the Lesley University MFA Program in Creative Writing. Campo is the author of The Enemy, Landscape with Human Figure, Diva, and What the Body Told, all published by Duke University Press. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Pushcart Prize, the Gold Medal in Poetry from ForeWord, the Paterson Poetry Prize, two Lambda Literary Awards, and a National Book Critics Circle Award nomination. Campo's poetry has appeared in numerous periodicals, including The Nation, The New Republic, Paris Review, Ploughshares, The Progressive, Slate.com, Yale Review, and The Threepenny Review.