Sky Lounge

Mark Bibbins

Graywolf Press




72 Pages



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Winner of the 16th Annual Lambda Literary Award

In this restless and unpredictable debut collection, Bibbins offers us a virtuosic, immediately arresting poetry. Lovers struggle to connect; groupies, hustlers, and corporate drones covet better—or at least different—lives; locations fluctuate, without forewarning, from bars to beaches to city streets. With beguiling tonal and formal variety, these poems question the ordinary and unwitting acceptance of the status quo as they hover where "error arranges itself."

As indebted to Stereolab and Siouxsie Sioux as to any poetic or "literary" lineage, Sky Lounge introduces an imagination committed to making irreverence, sensuality, and elegy into a provocative new music.


Praise for Sky Lounge

"I love Sky Lounge. Bibbins splices together idioms and idiolects into cool, smooth, transporting lyrics—compact monologues that also resemble radio plays, explosive and evaporating, with no wrong moves, and with a welcome surplus of charm."—Wayne Koestenbaum

"[Bibbins] experiments with stripping away nearly all traces of narrative to leave us with poems that proceed by building images and emotions, piling them one on top of another . . . Sky Lounge is filled with poems that play with form and language, and that are ceaselessly inventive and experimental."—Lambda Book Report

"In a sea of prosaic poets, Bibbins' range, reach, and refusal to be easily categorized make him deliciously relevant."—The Gay & Lesbian Review

"Imagine Vladimir and Estragon have changed their names, slipped into our century, and become so thoroughly distracted by piped music that Godot is the one who waits. This is the world Mark Bibbins has achieved in the phenomenal Sky Lounge. Here poems are narcotic ambles among prepositions that refuse to position, fix, or point us in any final direction. Time, these poems rakishly understand, will never run out. Or it is better to run out on time than to connect the self to that which is mortal. A remarkable achievement."—Claudia Rankine

"Bibbins' poems zoom in on the minute gestures of social life and the products that attend them. In this world between desolation and wonder, 'the orange smoke of the plastics / factory is / beautiful against the moon.' Under staccato rhythms and clipped everyday speech, an emotional depth gradually builds as its bright surface flashes by."—Peter Gizzi

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Mark Bibbins

  • Mark Bibbins teaches writing workshops at the New School, where he also co-founded LIT magazine. His work has appeared in Poetry, The Paris Review, The Yale Review, and in the anthology Take Three:3. He lives in New York City.