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In his debut collection, Billy Ramsell charts the challenges and complicated pleasures of loving relationships in a distinctly modern, urban environment in which, though details of our lives announce themselves in bills and junk mail, questions of identity and purpose continue to haunt us. Wide in range, diverse and energetic in their forms, the poems seek to strike a balance between confession and exploration. By times tender and embracing, unafraid of the necessary giving into love, the poems also manageto be clear-eyed about the facts of the world around them: "You have eleven laughs / and seven scents / and I know them like a language. / But what will it matter when the bombs start to fall / that you could never love me?" Complicated Pleasures is a first collection of considerable daring and undeniable accomplishment


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