by Jasper Bernes
We Are Nothing and So Can You is a book-length poem for the long 21st century to come, a poem of revolts past, present, and future. In alternating passages of rhapsodic verse and speculative prose, Bernes plots the dynamic movement of history, both irreversible and recursive, moving forward directly and by twists and turns, in sentences and lines, standing still and hurtling toward the abyss.
This is an epic for an age without heroes save collective heroes, leaping from the occupied plazas and rioting cities of the aughts and teens to futures alternately desolate and full of promise.
About the Author:
Jasper Bernes is the author of a previous collection of poems, Starsdown (2007), and is currently completing a book of literary history, The Work of Art in the Age of Deindustrialization, about the role of poetry in the postindustrial restructuring of labor. Excerpts from We Are Nothing and So Can You have appeared in Lana Turner, The American Reader, The Capilano Review, Hi Zero, Prelude, and elsewhere. His writing on contemporary politics and political economy can be found in venues such as The New Inquiry, LARB, Endnotes, and Viewpoint. He lives in Berkeley with his family and teaches in the English Departments at UC Berkeley and Stanford University.