Hotel Madden Poems



Pont L'Archiveche

This evening I'm surprise


by the way light

alludes to

an exile

wherein a world of which

I cannot speak

is glorified.

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“Hotel Madden” is a fine and powerful book.
— William Bronk
Pines’ “Hotel Madden Poems” documents a rapidly vanishing America. Pines sits in a room over a bar, haunted by ghosts of unacknowledged geniuses. With astounding lyricism, he arranges memory into short, piercing stanzas before going home to his wife and child. This dichotomy between tortured artist and loving husband, the desire to be both and the fear of being neither, lends these poems a stunning, rare urgency.
— Rochelle Ratner
The figure of the author in his hotel room, quietly communing with the key conducti to his thought: Nicholas of Cusa through Lafcadio Hearn and Einstein, with the dominant figure of Paul Klee, grows more and more compelling. The little typewritten diacritical drawings put Klee into greater focus. I am impressed with the wholeness of Pines’ weave.
— Theodore Enslin
Paul Pines moves with equal facility through time and space, philosophical abstraction and narrative detail. Beautifully written, profoundly introspective, “Hotel Madden Poems” are a rare combination of personal, social and aesthetic commentary which never loses its art, its focus, its center.
— Susan Sherman
Paul Pines’ dedication to Hotel Madden Poems describes the book as a “fugue.” That is exactly what this brilliant and compelling work is. Pines, a virtuoso of precision, knows that the word “fugue” contains two meanings. One comes from music…the other from psychiatry: a fugue is a period during which a patient suffers memory loss… The memory loss that Pines’ poetic fugue embodies is America’s; the metaphor he uses to symbolize it is the Hotel Madden.
— Lawrence Joseph, American Book Review


Joseph Lawrence, Half Angel, Half Human in the American Book Review, Volume 14, Number 6 February/March 1993