In this compassionate new collection, Philip Schultz’s wry and incisive poetic voice takes on both the eternal questions of meaning and happiness and essentially modern complexities―the collective power of women’s marches, the strangeness of googling oneself, the refugee crisis, the emotions associated with visiting the 9/11 memorial. At once philosophical and droll, Schultz explores life’s luxuries and challenges with masterly precision.
Luxury takes its name from the center poem, which has an ironic ring next to Schultz’s Pulitzer Prize–winning collection Failure. The poem is a beautiful exploration of the pull toward life as Schultz examines the question of suicide, intimately probing a familial pull toward that darkness and weaving in the philosophy of Albert Camus and the voices and legacies of Paul Celan and Ernest Hemingway. Using humor, irony, and celebration as ballast against the book’s darker forces, Luxury explores the comfort and sustenance of life, the bittersweet clarity of aging, and the anxiety of existence.
Philip Schultz is the author of My Dyslexia, a memoir; The Wherewithal, a novel in verse; and seven collections of poetry, including the Pulitzer Prize–winning Failure. The founder and director of the Writers Studio, he lives in East Hampton, New York.